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^  -'  •   ■/  t>7/.i 


Harvard  College 
Library 


mmr* 


Gift  of 
The  Author 


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THE 


MARKET    BOOK 


OOMTlINOrO  ▲ 


HISTORICAL  ACCOUNT 

OF  THE  PUBLIC  MARKETS  IN  THE  CITIES  OF 

Fitk  I  brief  Deieri^  tf  mrj  Irtide  tf  Hnu  hd  add  ttoeii 
THE  DTTBODUOTION  OF  CATTLE  IN  AMEBIOA 

AND  Noncis  or  HANY  »»!«*»»  *»■■  sncDoim 


BT 

THOMAS    p.    DB    VOB 


IN   TWO  VOLUIIBS 

Vol.  I. 


NEW    YORK 

PRINTED    FOR    THE    AUTHOR 
1862. 


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It...  c  .    ^/ 


'^  i    - 


Uf    .        -TY 
LB^.RY 


iSoUrtd  iccordlng  to  Act  of  Coogroi,  in  the  year  1862, 

Hy  TiioM AH  P.  Di  VoB, 

In  tlift  Clark's  OAeo  of  Uut  DiHirict  Court  of  the  United  Sutes  for  the  Soathern 
DiAtrict  of  New  York. 


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THIS    YOLUMK    CONTAINS 
A    HISTORY 

PUBLIC  MARKETS 

CITY  OF  n:e:'w  york, 

FROM  ITS  FQtST  SETTLEMENT  TO  THE  PRESENT  TIMEL 


wm  mnmon  anuom  amv  uiubeablb  noiDnTi  oomncniD  twubwrh, 
jUM  niTmoDOonoff  or  OATTUif  surrun,  tbadoio,  rucn,  avd  lawb; 

■OROin  or  TRB   OLD   BCROHBE    BCTOHBM,  AND  TBI    UC 

or  MODBBK  nim;  Toomnm  wm  ▲  ooimLA- 
mm  or  wAon  or  btbrt  sobt  un  cBABiona 

ULATDIO  TO  THB  MniMT. 


rAOT,    NOT    rAMOT. 


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t 

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TO 


GEORGE    H.    MOORE,    Esq*, 


THIS   YOLUMB 


IS  MOOT  ABSPEGTFULLT  DEDICATED, 

AS  A  TRIBDTE   OF   ESTEEM  AND  REaPEGT, 

FOR  HIS  UNWAVERING   FRIENDSHIP  TO 


THE   AUTHOR. 


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PREFACE. 


A  Pbefacb  appears  to  be  demanded  from  all  who  are  goiliy  of 
introducing  another  book  into  life;  whether  it  is  done  for  fame, 
name,  profit,  the  public  good,  to  be  instructiye  or  interesting,  or 
for  any  other  consideration. 

In  my  case,  being  found  here,  so  much  out  of  my  line^  I  do  not 
know  under  which,  or  how  many,  of  the  above  heads  to  place  myself; 
and  I  must  therefore  leave  the  reader  to  judge,  and  determine  my 
position  from  his  own  estimate  of  my  merit. 

For  several  years,  the  unemployed  hours  from  my  business,  or 
rather  profession,  had  hung  heavily  on  my  mind,  and  to  fill  them  up 
satisfactorily,  was  a  thought  I  had  often  indulged  in.  To  be  sure, 
at  times,  there  were  no  leisure  hours,  not  one  of  the  twenty-four,  but 
what  were  needed  for  rest ;  and  again,  one,  two,  three,  and  sometimes 
four,  could  be  employed  in  doing  something,  either  useful  or  wasteful ; 
but  what  to  do,  was  the  question.  I  knew  I  had  some  knowledge, 
which  business  and  observation  had  given  me;  but  I  also  knew  that 
I  was  very  deficient  in  learning^  or  at  least  of  knowing  how  to  ex- 
press myself,  satisfactorily  to  myself.  So  I  thought  to  improve,  or 
at  least  to  inform  myself,  even  at  this  late  day ;  but  the  reader  may 
say,  "An  old  scholar  is  not  an  apt  one" — and  so  I  found  it.  I  had 
the  disadvantage  of  not  knowing  which  end  to  begin  with,  but 
went  headforemost  into  what  appeared  to  me  to  be  the  most  agree- 
able to  my  feelings. 

Early  in  life,  (1829,)  I  had  engaged  in  the  military,  and  have 
continued  in  it,  I  may  say  with  but  a  short  intermission,  to  the  pres- 
ent day:  this  somewhat  excited  the  mind,  and  sometimes  drew 
heavily  on  my  leisure  hours,  while  I  sought  such  information  as  I 
could  find  on  this  subject.  My  researches  at  last  extended  to  the 
"rooms"  of  the  Historical  Society,  where  I  became  acquainted  with 
the  attentive,  obliging,  and  gentlemanly  Librarian,  Mr.  George  H. 


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Viii  PREFACE. 

Moore,  who,  after  an  agreeable  acquaintance,  unexpectedly  caused 
me  to  be  introduced  as  a  member  of  this  honored  association.  Here 
he  opened  out  to  me  all  the  rich  treasures  contained  therein,  and  I 
eagerly  devoured^  not  only  the  ^^mUitary  subjects/^  but  all  connected 
with  our  city ;  and  at  last  I  began  to  fed  that  I  had  either  swallowed 
or  been  bitten  by  a  raind  antiquary.  I  found  there  was  no  remedy 
for  this  dreadful  disease,  but  by  taking,  in  allopathic  doses,  sundry 
piles  of  old  musty  records,  in  various  forms  and  at  various  times. 
I  submitted  to  the  treatment,  but,  in  my  case,  it  only  relieved  the 
disease  for  a  short  period  after  the  last  time-ioorn  paper  of  ihepUe 
had  passed ;  upon  the  sight  or  knowledge  of  another,  it  again  re- 
turned in  full  force.  In  fact,  I  had  acquired  a  fondness  for  histori- 
cal information,  and  more  especially  for  such  as  related  to  my  native 
city. 

The  numerous  Records  and  Files  of  the  Common  Council,  with 
various  old  books,  newspapers,  pamphlets,  <fec.,  had  been  glanced 
over,  and  the  result  was,  a  large  mass  of  historical  material,  on 
various  subjects,  had  been  collected,  as  I  then  thought,  more  for  my 
own  personal  gratification  and  amusement,  than  for  any  other  use. 
However,  I  found  my  researches  had  so  completed  my  knowledge 
of  the  introduction,  time,  place,  name,  and  the  final  exit  of  the 
numerous  public  market-places  in  the  City  of  New  York,  that  I 
was  enabled  to  give  them,  or  rather  parts  of  them,  to  the  "press," 
in  answer  to  some  "Reports"  and  "Communications." 

My  esteemed  friend,  Mr.  Moore,  gently  hinted  that  a  paper  on 
this  subject  would  be  acceptable  to  the  Society ;  that  I  had  drawn 
heavily  upon  the  Treasures  of  the  Society,  and  that  it  was  due  to 
them.  I  admitted  the  justice  of  the  claim,  but  pleaded  my  position 
and  ineflSciency,  and  that  I  could  much  better  furnish  any  other 
than  an  intellectual  feast  However,  after  repeated  playful  de- 
mands, I  consented  to  prepare  a  sketch,  with  the  understanding 
that  he  should  revise,  if  he  thought  proper,  and  read  it. 

Before  it  was  finished,  one  other  intimate  friend,  who  belonged 
to  the  Society,  said  to  me,  that  I  "must  prepare  and  read  the  paper 
without  any  assistance."  To  this  I  answered,  "  I  would  not  think 
of  such  a  thing,  as  it  might  not  only  reflect  on  the  Society,  but  also 
upon  myself."  Says  he,  "  Then  you  must  disappoint  the  Society, 
yourself,  as  well  as  otic  or  two  others^  who  have  not  displayed  very 
friendly  feelings,  on  learning  the  proposed  arrangement."  I  had 
always  practiced  and  preferred  a  retired  position,  but  I  felt  stung, 
and  concluded  that,  if  there  was  anything  in  me,  it  must  now  come 


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PBEFACB.  ix 

out;  BO,  with  renewed  and  my  best  energies,  I  finished  the  paper ^ 
sought  Mr.  Moore,  explained  my  position,  and  asked  his  presence 
at  my  honse,  to  say  whether  I  must  fail  or  succeed.  He  decided 
in  favor  of  the  latter,  and,  at  my  request,  gave  me  an  introductory 
letter  to  the  Rev.  Dr.  Osgood,  one  of  the  Committee  on  Papers  to 
be  read,  that  I  might  also  consult  with  him. 

In  the  mean  time,  I  found  that  the  "  Chamber  of  Commerce"  (the 
History  of  which  had  been  so  well  written  by  the  Hon.  Charles 
King,  the  present  highly  esteemed  President  of  Columbia  College,) 
had  been  a  prominent  body,  with  whom  the  military  authorities 
bad  consulted  on  many  subjects,  including  our  public  markets,  dur- 
ing the  Revolution.  To  get  at  the  details  on  this  subject,  I  was 
enabled,  through  a  letter  of  introduction,  to  consult  Mr.  King, 
when  he  became  interested  in  my  paper,  and  I  was  greatly  pleased 
to  be  summoned  before  him,  that  he  might  advise  with  me  in  rela- 
tion to  it.  He  listened  to  the  result  of  my  efforts,  and  in  the  end 
he  gratified  me  by  saying  that  he  should  come  to  hear  it  again  be- 
fore the  Society.  Then,  with  the  approbation  of  the  Rev.  Dr. 
Osgood,  who  had  also  heard  it  read,  I  felt  fully  prepared  to^face 
this  strong  battery  of  wisdom,  intelligence,  and  honor,  as  well  as 
the  several  regiments  of  soldiers  which  I  have  had  the  honor  to 
command — without  flinching. 

On  the  evening  of  the  4th  of  May,  1858, 1  read  my  paper  before 
the  New  York  Historical  Society,  and  its  reception  was  all,  and 
more,  than  I  expected ;  and,  if  confession  is  proper  here,  I  was 
elated — it  struck  in  so  deep,  that — the  result  is  before  you.  I 
might  also  add,  that  a  few  days  after,  a  further  impetus  was  given 
me,  by  several  complimentary  resoluilons,  from  some  professional 
and  other  friends,  requesting  me  to  repeat  the  reading  of  the  above, 
at  an  early  day,  to  which,  with  pleasure,  I  consented.  This  took 
place  in  the  large  Hall  of  the  Cooper  Institute;  and  again  it  was 
most  flatteringly  received.  On  both  occasions,  the  "press"  gener- 
ally and  favorably  noticed  my  effort,  for  which  many  thanks  are 
due. 

The  employment  of  my  leisure  hours  has,  at  times,  been  so  dis- 
connected, in  consequence  of  my  engagements  and  the  usual  troubles 
and  trials  of  business,  that  it  was  difiicult,  sometimes,  to  ^et  back 
on  my  old  trail:  this,  with  the  faults,  c^  rather  the  neglect,  of  edu- 
cation, will  no  doubt  cause  the  style  and  grammar  to  be  somewhat 
broken,  disconnected,  or  inelegant.  However,  my  whole  aim  has 
been,  that  it  should  be  fadj  not  fancy — accurate  and  faithful ;  to 


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X  PREFACE. 

give  precisely  what  I  found  and  experienced ;  preserving  as  much 
of  the  original  language  and  orthography  as  possible;  denoting 
extracts,  as  such,  with  marks  of  quotation,  and  using  my  own  lan- 
guage to  connect  or  carry  on  the  subject  in  this  Tolume. 

I  now  find  myself  in  that  position  where  my  indebtedness  is  so 
much,  to  so  many,  that  I  fear  I  cannot  name  all  to  whom  I  owe 
many  thanks.  To  the  courtesy  and  kindness  of  Darid  T.  Valentine, 
Esq.,  Clerk  of  the  Common  Council;  George  H.  Moore,  Esq,, 
Librarian  of  the  New  York  Historical  Society,  and  the  Librarians 
of  the  several  Libraries  of  our  City,  as  of  several  others;  to 
Dr.  John  W.  Francis,  (deceased,)  Hon.  Henry  Meigs,  Messrs.  Wil- 
liam J.  Davis,  Henry  B.  Dawson,  Col.  William  Appleby,  Jacob 
Aims,  Thomas  Jeremiah,  Daniel  Burtnett,  John  M.  Seaman,  John 
Scott,  (deceased,)  and  numerous  other  gentlemen,  I  specially  ac- 
knowledge my  obligations.  I  have  also  derived  much  assistance 
from  the  works  of  O'Oallaghan,  Dunlap,  Smith,  Watson,  Moulton, 
Hardie,  Horsmanden,  Valentine,  Ac. 

Almost  every  one  (more  especially  the  aged  citizen)  has  some 
special  historical  knowledge,  connected  with  family,  friends,  or 
neighborhood,  worthy  of  being  known  and  revealed,  for  the  instruc- 
tion or  gratification  of  others,  or  as  shedding  new  light  upon  the 
annals  of  our  city.  Permit  me,  in  concluding  this  Pr^cuXf  to  ask 
from  such  as  have  the  power  to  grant  it,  that  if,  while  reading  these 
sketches  of  the  past,  their  own  memories  may  be  stirred  by  long- 
dormant  recollections  of  remarkable  incidents  or  scenes,  they  will 
be  good  enough  to  note  these  recollections,  as  material  for  the  use 
of  either  myself,  or  others  who,  like  myself,  may  adventure  upon 
the  agreeable  task  of  seeking  to  revive  by-gone  days. 

THOMAS  P.  DE  VOE, 

JBtUcher. 


Jbffebson  Markvt, 

CiTT  OP  New  York,  186L 


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INTRODUCTION. 


In  presenting  the  following  historical  matter,  I  do  not  propose  to 
reveal  anything  which  is  new  or  even  interesting  to  the  historian, 
whose  well-worn  path  is  before  me ;  and  although  I  may  not  follow 
in  his  immediate  footsteps,  yet  I  must  travel  on  the  same  high-road, 
or  I  cannot  be  true  to  history. 

The  historian,  in  seeking  his  mental  fare,  looks  only  for  the  choicest 
and  most  substantial  food  to  satisfy  his  natural  appetite ;  and  his 
eagle  eye  merely  glances  at  the  stray  crumbs  which  have  fallen  from 
his  plate,  while  the  hungry  gleaner,  who  follows  after,  is  forced  to 
pick  them  up,  to  cover  such  othw  rejected  food  as  may  be  left,  but 
which  he  gladly  seizes  and  ravenously  devours.  I  therefore  hope  to 
find  the  reader  hungry  enough  to  partake  of  the  gleaner^s  fare. 

The  contents  of  this  volume  will  chiefly  relate  to  the  establish- 
ment of  the  several  market-places  and  public  market-houses  within 
the  present  limits  of  the  City  of  New  York. 

No  doubt  the  number  will  surprise  many;  there  having  been 
more  than  forty,  although  several  have  been  found  located  on  or 
near  the  same  spot  where  a  former  one  had  ceased  to  exist.  They 
were,  however,  separate  and  distinct  markets,  as  will  appear  from 
the  various  sources  of  evidence  presented  through  the  following 


In  giving  each  their  separate  histories,  many  interesting  incidents 
or  local  facts  will  be  introduced,  to  relieve  the  necessary  sameness 
of  80  much  building  up  and  tearing  or  tumbling  down,  which  so 
many  ptibltc  edifices  would  seem  to  demand.  Although  not  an  in- 
teresting subject,  yet  the  early  age  and  associations  may  assist  to 
interest  the  minds  of  those  who  now  and  then  like  to  look  back  at 
the  ages  past;  to  see  the  feeble  steps  of  the  first  settlers;  to  follow 
the  more  firm  tread  of  their  children;  and  to  witness  the  rapid 
strides  of  their  fast  generations. 

The  main  object  of  the  early  settlers  of  New  Netherlands  was,  no 
doubt,  to  better  their  condition ;  and  when  they  beheld  these  beautiful 


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Xii  INTRODUCTION. 

and  bountiful  lands — as  Van  der  Donk  says,  "  The  country  fruitful 
and  advantageously  situated,  possessed  good  and  safe  hayens,  rivers, 
fisheries,  and  many  other  worthy  appurtenances;"  and,  in  truth, 
excelled  their  Fatherland,  {Netherlands) — ^they  had  good  reason  to 
name  it  New  Netherlands.  **  In  short,  (says  Lambrechtsen,)  New 
Netherlands,  to  make  use  of  Hudson's  own  words,  was  the  most  beau- 
tiful country  on  which  you  could  tread  your  feet.  The  natives  were 
good-natured,  peaceable,  and  obliging ;  the  climate  pretty  near  at 
par  with  ours ;  so  that  New  Netherlands  was  very  properly  adapted 
for  our  nation,  to  be  settled  by  it,  as  there  seemed  nothing  wanting 
but  domestic  cattle." 

The  natives  were  also  found  to  be  agriculturists,  cultivating  the 
land,  and  producing  many  species  of  grain  and  vegetables.  Hud- 
son says :  "  I  sailed  to  the  shore  in  one  of  their  canoes  with  an  old 
man,  who  was  the  chief  of  a  tribe  consisting  of  forty  men  and  seven- 
teen women ;  these  I  saw — there  in  a  house  well  constructed  of  oak- 
bark,  and  circular  in  shape,  so  that  it  had  the  appearance  of  being 
built  with  an  arched  roof.  It  contained  a  great  quantity  of  maize, 
or  Indian  corn,  and  beans  of  the  last  year's  growth ;  and  there  lay 
near  the  house,  for  the  purpose  of  drying,  enough  to  load  three  ships, 
besides  what  was  growing  in  the  fields." 

The  chase  also  furnished  them,  at  one  and  at  the  same  time,  with 
clothing  and  food  from  the  various  species  of  wild  animals,  wild 
fowl,  fish,  fruits,  nuts  and  roots,  and  fine  oysters,  which  they,  at 
times,  exchanged  with  or  gave  to  the  sometimes  almost  starving  set- 
tlers. In  an  address  from  the  Indians  to  the  ambassadors  of  Gov. 
Kieft,  they  say :  "  When  you  first  arrived  on  our  shores,  you  were 
often  in  want  of  food ;  we  gave  you  our  beans  and  our  corn,  and 
let  you  eat  our  oysters  and  fish."* 

The  West  India  Company  went  into  active  operation  in  the  year 
1623,  trading  principally  in  peltries,  but  did  not  do  much  to  en- 
courage the  settlement  or  population.  "  Not  a  particle  of  the  soil 
was  reclaimed,  save  what  scantily  supplied  a  few  servants  of  the 
Company."t  The  country,  however,  was  becoming  more  favorably 
known  to  the  Directors,  who  resolved  to  further  improve  it,  by 
sending  over  several  families,  and  introducing  domestic  cattle. 
Accordingly,  in  the  spring  of  1625,  (says  Wassenaer,)  Peter  Evertsen 
Hulft  (one  of  the  members  of  the  Board)  brought  in  two  ships,  of 
280  tons  burden,  "  one  hundred  and  three  cattle,  among  which  were 
stallions,  mares,  bulls  and  cows,  for  breeding,  as  well  as  swine  and 
sheep.    These  beasts  were  all  very  well  provided  for  on  ship-board 

O'CaUaghan.  f  Ibid. 


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INTRODUCTION.  xiii 

— olinoBt  as  well  as  on  shore.  Each  one  had  his  own  stall,  arranged 
with  a  flooring  of  sand/'  with  plenty  of  water,  hay,  and  straw. 

"  The  beasts,  two  of  which  only  died  on  the  passage,  were,  on 
their  arrival,  landed  on  Noten  Island^  (now  Governor's  IslandJ 
bnt  there  being  no  grazing-ground  for  them  at  that  spot,  they  were, 
a  day  or  two  afterwards,  taken  by  shallops  and  barges  to  Manhat- 
tan, where  they  eventually  throve  very  well,  though  some  twenty, 
in  all,  were  lost:  many  of  them  by  eating  some  kind  of  poisonous 
vegetation,  which  had  also  destroyed  the  first  shipment  of  domestic 
animals,  sent  here  several  years  before.  These  were  brought  by 
Bmdrick  Ohristiansen^  but  were  all  of  the  smaller  kinds,  consisting 
of  bucks  and  goats,  also  rabbits.'  We  may  therefore  conclude  that 
those  brought  by  Hulft  in  1625  were  the  first  large  domestic  cattle 
introduced ;  and  those  also  of  the  smaller  species  brought  by  him, 
were  Hie  first  of  the  breed  successfully  prolific  in  New  Netherlands" 

In  1626,^  Director  Minuit  concluded  a  treaty  with  the  natives, 
by  which  they  ceded  Manhattan  Island  to  the  Dutch,  for  the  sum 
of  ^^sixty  guilders."  The  land  which  composes  the  now  great  City 
and  County  of  New  York,  estimated  to  contain  twefiity-tioo  thousand 
acres  of  land,  was  purchased  for  twenty-four  doUarsI  So  the 
"West  India  Company"  became  the  owners,  and  reserved  it  for 
themselves,  as  stated  in  their  "Charter  of  Liberties;"  but  they 
made  very  slow  progress  either  in  colonizing  it,  or  in  producing 
many  of  the  common  necessaries  of  life. 

Dominie  Jonas  Mtchadius,  in  a  letter  dated  August  11th,  1628, 
says:  "We  want  ten  or  twelve  farmers,  with  horses,  cows,  and  la- 
borers in  proportion,  to  furnish  us  with  bread  and  fresh  butter,  milk 
and  cheese." 

The  population  two  years  before  (1626)  numbered  but  "two 
hundred  and  seventy  souls,  including  men,  women,  and  children  ;"t 
but  in  1629  the  Company  offered  greater  inducements,  in  the 
forms  of  "freedoms  and  exemptions"  to  families  or  single  persons, 
and  a  "patroonship"  to  those  who  would,  in  four  years,  "plant  a 
colonie  of  fifty  souls,  upwards  of  fifteen  years  old ; "  the  last 
named,  however,  were  not  allowed  to  settle  on  the  Island  of  Man- 
hattan, and  "  all  fruit  and  wares  that  are  produced  on  the  lands 
situated  on  the  North  River,  and  lying  thereabout,  shall  for  the 
present  be  brought  there,  before  they  may  be  sent  elsewhere. "J 

In  the  "Conditions  entered  into  and  made  between  the  Lords 
the  Burgomasters  of  the  City  of  Amsterdam  and  the  West  India 
Company,"  favorable  articles  were  also  set  forth  to  encourage  colo- 

*  WaasenMr.    Also,  Hoi.  Doc.  Col.  Hia.  f  Wanenier. 

t  M.  T.  H.  C.  N.  8.,  voL  L,  p.  371. 


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xiy  INTRODUCTION. 

nization.  Article  6  says,  "  That  the  said  cily  (Amsterdam)  shall 
provide  a  suitable  piece  of  land  on  the  banks  of  a  river  for  a 
proper  dwelling-place  for  the  colonists.  The  place  shall  be  pro- 
vided with  a  trench  and  wall  on  the  outer  side,  and  the  inner 
ground  be  laid  out  with  streets,  a  market,  and  in  lots,  for  the  ad- 
vantage of  merchants,  mechanics,  and  those  who  will  pursue  agri- 
culture— the  whole  to  be  done  at  the  cost  of  said  city." 

"Art.  9.  And  to  the  end  that  the  colonists  may  be  provided 
with  necessaries  as  far  as  is  practicable,  the  said  city  shall  supply 
them  with  clothing  and  Tiecessaries  for  one  year,  and  also  with  seed- 
grain  ;  and  for  the  assurance  and  certainty  of  having  the  necessary 
supplies  on  hand,  the  city  shall  erect  a  large  magazine  or  warehouse 
in  said  place  for  the  storage  of  clothing  and  necessaries  for  the 
people,  wherein  they  shall  keep  their /actor,  who  shall  supply  every 
colonist  with  necessary  clothing,  household  necessaries,  and  hus- 
bandry articles,  at  the  same  prices  of  this  country,  (Amsterdam) — 
the  toll  of  the  Company  not  charged."* 

The  Directors  in  Holland,  in  the  year  1639,  to  further  encour- 
age emigration,  offered  free  passages  to  such  farmers  and  their  fam- 
ilies "as  were  desirous  of  proceeding  to  New  Netherlands,  where, 
on  their  arrival,  they  were  promised  to  be  furnished  for  six  years 
with  a  farm,  fit  for  the  plough,  a  dwelling-house,  a  barn,  a  suitable 
number  of  laborers,  four  horses,  an  equal  number  of  cows,  sheep 
and  swine  in  proportion,  with  the  necessary  farming  implements; 
for  which  they  were,  however,  to  be  bound  to  pay  a  yearly  rent  of 
one  hundred  guilders,  (equal  to  $40,)  and  eighty  pounds  of  butter. 
On  the  expiration  of  his  lease,  the  tenant  was  to  restore  the  same 
number  of  cattle  that  he  had  received  on  entering  into  possession, 
retaining  for  himself  whatever  increase  there  might  have  been,  in 
the  mean  time,  from  the  original  stock.  To  those  who  owned 
farms,  but  who  had  not  the  means  of  providing  stock,  the  Com- 
pany loaned  cattle  for  a  certain  number  of  years,  *on  halves;' 
that  is,  on  expiration  of  the  contract,  the  number  ftirnished  were 
restored,  with  half  the  increase." 

Additions  were  also  made  from  the  settlements  in  New  England 
and  Virginia,  where  the  freedom  of  conscience  had  been  proscribed. 
They  removed  by  "whole  towns  to  the  Netherlands,  to  enjoy  that 
religious  liberty  denied  them  by  their  own  countrymen;"  but  in 
order  to  secure  their  allegiance,  "they  were  therefore  called  on  to 
take  and  subscribe  an  oath  of  fldelity."t 

•  N.  Y.  H.  C,  N.  S.,  VOL  L,  p.  239.  f  O'CaUaghan. 


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WEST  INDIA  COMPANY'S  STORE. 

The  Company's  large  "Magazine,  or  Warehouse,"  consisted 
of  five  substantial  stone  buildings,  adjoining  each  other,  afterwards 
known  as  the  "  Company's  Store-Houses,"  was  erected  at  an  early 
period.  They  occupied  a  position  fronting  westward,  towards 
**  Fort  Amsterdam,"  where  an  open  space,  of  more  than  one  hun- 
dred feet  in  width,  originally  laid  between  them.  This  open  space 
or  street,  which  extended  along  the  front  of  the  **  Store-Houses," 
was  called  "  Winkle  Street,"  Market  Street,  or  Store  Street,  and 
ran  nearly  on  a  line  of  Whitehall  Street.  On  this  street,  be- 
tween the  present  Bridge  and  Stone  Streets,  stood  the  "  Company's 
Store-Houses,"*  in  which  was  the  Jirst  regularly  appointed  depot  or 
market-place  in  New  Amsterdam,  and  from  which  the  settlers  were 
sapplied  with  the  daily  necessaries  of  life.  This  fact,  however,  will 
be  more  satisfactorily  shown  in  a  malversation  committed  by  one 
of  the  Company's  servants  a  few  years  after.  There  is  no  doubt, 
however,  that  previous  to  the  erection  of  these  "  Store-Houses," 
and  the  introduction  of  domestic  cattle,  the  inhabitants  were  chiefly 
furnished  by  the  Indians  with  the  flesh  of  wild  game,  fish,  oysters, 
clams,  and  such  vegetation  as  they  produced. 

The  town,  in  1633,  came  under  the  administration  of  Director 
Van  Twiller,  who  improved  the  fortifications,  built  a  church,  and 
several  dwelling-houses.  But,  "scarcely  one  solitary  agricultural 
settler  had  been,  as  yet,  sent  over  by  the  Company  to  fell  the 
forest  or  reclaim  the  wilderness."t 

Governor  Van  Twiller  appears  to  have  devoted  the  greater  part 
of  his  time  to  agriculture.  "  One  of  his  plantations  was  at  Red 
Hook ;  and  Governor's  Island,  which  is  supposed  always,  from  the 
first  settlement,  to  have  been  a  perquisite  of  the  Director-General 
for  the  time  being,  was  said  to  have  been  so  near  Red  Hook,  that 
cattle  crossed  the  channel  to  and  fro  at  low  water."t  "This  Island 
he  purchased,  in  June,  1634,  from  the  Indian  proprietors,  who  called 
it  'Pagganck,'  or  *Nut  Island;'  the  Dutch  lengthened  it  to  *Noten,' 
or  Nutten  Island ;  and  the  English  further,  to  Governor's  Island. 
He  also  purchased  two  islands  at  Hell  Gate,  in  July,  now  known 
as  Randall's  and  Great  Barn  Island.  These  'plantations'  he  had 
taken  care  to  have  well  stocked,  but  greatly  ne^lect^d  those  of  the 
Company,  which  were  found  by  his  successor.  Sir  William  Kieft,  in 
*  Vftlentine,  Hist  of  N.  Y.    City  Records.         f  O'CalUghan.         t  DunUp. 


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16 


WEST    INDIA   COMPANY'S   STORE. 


1638,  to  be  without  tenants,  stock,  or  cultiyation,  and  thrown  into 
*  commons.*  "* 

At  this  period,  (1637,)  we  find  the  price  of  provisions  and  rates 
of  wages  for  laborers  were  as  follows:  "J?yc  was  worth  two  florins 
and  a  half  (about  one  dollar)  per  schepel  of  three  pecks.  Maize,  (or 
Indian  com,)  one  and  a  half  florin.  Wheat ,  three  florins.  Peas^ 
four  to  five  florins.  Broken  barley,  four  florins.  Pork,  seven  stivers 
per  pound.  Meat,  (beef,)  six  stivers  do.  A  hog  six  months  old 
brought  fifteen  florins.  A  keg  of  butter,  twenty-five  florins.  A  la- 
l)orer  in  harvest  got  about  eighty  cents  a  day,  on  other  occasion^ 
sixty ;  while  the  price  of  a  negro  was  forty  florins,  or  $16."t 

At  the  commencement  of  Van  Twiller's  administration,  an 
"Inventory"  shows  that  all  the  Company's  farms  had  been 
*' liberally  stocked  with  brood-mares,  oxen,  milch-cows,  heifers, 
yearlings,  goats,  calves,  and  the  necessary  farming  implements." 
While  after  its  close,  was  found,  from  their  "five  or  six  farms  on 
Manhattan  Island — which  were  now  destitute  of  a  creature — 16 
milch-cows,  10  mares,  a  number  of  sheep  and  other  stock,  had  been 
sold  and  otherwise  disposed  of."  So  that  many  of  Van  Twiller's 
acts  appeared  to  give  cause  for  suspicion  that  "  he  had  not  hesi- 
tated to  enrich  himself  at  the  Company's  expense."^ 

His  example  was  followed  by  another  of  the  Company's  servants; 
as  we  find,  a  few  years  afterwards,  the  store-keeper,  Ullrick  Lu- 
poid, was  complained  of  for  extortion  and  malversation.  "The 
inhabitants  being  generally  supplied  from  the  Company's  store  with 
whatever  goods  or  necessaries  they  required  at  fixed  prices,  being 
fifty  per  cent,  advance  on  their  prime  cost,  a  list  was  posted  in  a 
conspicuous  place  for  public  inspection,  which  shows  that  several 
articles  had  become  lessened  in  price  in  a  few  years,  no  doubt  in 
consequence  of  the  increasing  number  of  agriculturists.  This  list 
is  arranged  as  follows : 

A  hog,  (common  size,)  $  8.00 

GftbbAge,  (f^  100,)  12.00 

StaTCB,  (^  1,000  of  1,200,)  32.00 


Fresh  meat, 

6 

stivers, 

§  or  10  ctB.  f^  lb. 

Pork, 

6 

II 

10    "        « 

Butter, 

8 

u 

16    "        " 

To!>acco, 

7 

u 

U    «        « 

Dried  fish, 

12 

« 

24    "        « 

Hard  bread, 

16 

<l 

yioo 

Wbeateo  bread,? 

« 

or  14  cte.  f^  loaf. 

Rye  bread. 

5 

« 

10    " 

Corn  bread, 

4 

(1 

8    ««       " 

Indian  com, 

60 

eta.  f^  Bchepelll 

Barley, 

$2.00 

« 

Peas, 

S.25 

u 

Wheaten  flonr, 

1.00 

M 

Sugar, 
Sour  wine, 
Spanish  wine, 
French  wine, 
Grogham, 
Kersey  flannel, 
White  linen, 
Red  flannel, 
Children's  shoes, 
Brass  kettles. 


17  to  24  stivers  *%  lb. 
$Sl  V  bhd. 
4  Btivera  f^  quart 
10     "  " 

$1.00  f^  elL 
1.20     " 
18  to  20  sUvem     ** 
$1.20     " 
36  stivers  f^  pair. 
40     "     fi  piece; 


•Valentine.  f  O'Callaghan.  {Ibid. 

§  Stiver,  valued  at  about  two  cents.  ||  About  three  pecks. 


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WEST    INDIA   COMPANY'S    STORE.  H 

"  The  inhabitants  complained,  it  is  right  to  add,  that  the  goods  / 
in  the  Company's  store  were  overvalued :  a  complaint  which  was 
subsequently  admitted  to  have  sufScient  foundation  in  fact;  for 
Wrick  Lupoid,  the  store-keeper  in  charge,  was  found  guilty  of  ex- 
tortion and  malversation,  and  sentenced  by  the  Director  and  Coun- 
cil, by  and  with  the  advice  of  the  principal  inhabitants,  to  removal 
from  office ;  to  pay,  in  addition,  a  fine  of  eighty  dollars,  and  to  be 
banished  to  Holland.  His  sentence  was,  however,  remitted,  on  Lu- 
pold's  petition;  but  he  was  ordered  to  satisfy  the  'Company'  for 
his  malversation."* 

The  prospects  in  agricultural  pursuits,  and  more  especially  in 
that  of  cattle  and  hogs,  had  become  so  thriving  and  favorable,  as 
to  cause  Governor  Eieft  and  his  Council  to  establish,  on  the  15th 
September,  1641,  "two  Fairs  at  New  Amsterdam:  one  to  be  holden 
annually,  on  the  15th  of  October,  for  cattle  generally;  the  other  on 
the  first  of  November,  for  hogs."t 

We  have  been  favored  with  interesting  descriptions  of  the  cattle, 
hogs,  and  other  animals,  both  tame  and  wild,  domestic  fowl,  birds, 
fish,  with  numerous  agricultural  productions,  as  they  then  appeared, 
by  Van  der  Donk  and  other  early  writers,  from  which  the  following 
extracts  appear  to  be  suitable: 

Van  der  Donk  says,  "  The  CaMk  in  New  Netherlands  are  mostly 
of  the  Holland  breed,  and  with  proper  care,  they  raise  as  fine  cat- 
tle as  we  do  in  Holland.  There  are  also  cattle  brought  over  from 
the  province  of  Utrecht,  which  are  kept  in  the  highlands  at  Amers- 
fort,  (Flatlands,  L.  I.,)  where  they  thrive  as  well  as  in  Holland ; 
the  increase  is  not  quite  as  large,  but  the  stock  give  milk  enough, 
thrive  well  in  pasture,  and  yield  much  tallow. 

"  They  also  have  English  cattle  in  the  country,  which  are  not  im- 
ported by  the  Netherlanders,  but  purchased  from  the  English  in 
New  England.  Those  cattle  thrive  as  well  as  the  Holland  cattle, 
and  do  not  require  as  much  care  and  provender ;  and,  as  in  England, 
this  breed  will  do  well  unsheltered  whole  winters.  This  breed  of 
cattle  do  not  grow  near  as  large  as  the  Dutch  cattle;  do  not  give 
as  much  milk,  and  are  much  cheaper ;  but  they  fat  and  tallow  well. 

"They  who  desire  to  cross  the  breeds,  and  raise  the  best  kind  of 
stock,  put  a  Holland  bull  to  their  English  cows,  by  which  they  pro- 
duce a  good  mixed  breed  of  cattle  without  much  cost.  Oxen  do 
good  service  there,  and  are  not  only  used  by  the  English,  but  by 
some  of  the  Netherlanders  also,  to  the  wagon  and  plough.  The 
grazing  of  cattle  for  slaughtering  is  also  progressing,  as  well  of 
oxen  as  of  other  cattle,  which  produces  profit  in  beef  and  tallow." 
*  OX^aUaghan.  t  City  Records. 

Vol.  I.— 2 


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18  WEST    INDIA   COMPANY'S   STORE. 

"  Hogs  are  numerous  and  plenty — some  of  the  citizens  prefer  the 
English  breed  of  hogp,  because  they  are  hardy,  and  subsist  better  in 
winter  without  shelter ;  but  the  Holland  hogs  grow  much  larger  and 
heavier,  and  have  thicker  pork." 

"  Sheep  are  also  kept  in  the  New  Netherlands,  but  not  as  many  as 
in  New  England,  where  the  weaving  business  is  driven,  and  where 
much  attention  is  paid  to  sheep,  to  which  our  Netherlanders  pay 
little  attention.  The  sheep  thrive  well,  and  become  fat  enough.  I 
Lave  seen  mutton  so  exceedingly  fat  there,  that  it  was  too  luscious 
and  oflFensive.  The  flocks  require  to  be  guarded  and  tended  on  ac- 
count of  the  wolves,  for  which  purpose  men  cannot  be  spared ;  there 
is  also  a  more  important  hinderance  to  the  keeping  of  sheep,  which 
are  principally  kept  for  their  wool.  New  Netherlands  throughout 
is  a  woody  country,  being  almost  everywhere  beset  with  trees, 
stumps,  and  brushwood,  wherein  the  sheep  pasture,  and  by  which 
they  lose  most  of  their  wool,  which  by  appearance  does  not  seem  to 
be  out,  but  when  sheared  turns  out  light  in  the  fleeces.  These  are 
reasons  against  the  keeping  of  sheep." 

"The  inhabitants  keep  more  goats  than  sheep,  which  succeed  best; 
they  also  give  good  milk,  which  is  always  necessary,  and  because 
they  cost  little,  they  are  of  importance  to  the  new  settlers  and 
planters,  who  possess  small  means.  Such  persons  keep  goats  in- 
stead of  cows.  Goats  cost  little,  and  are  very  prolific;  and  the 
young  castrated  tups  afibrd  fine,  delightful  meat,  which  is  always 
in  demand. 

"  The  New  Netherlanders  also  have  every  kind  of  domcstic/ott??«, 
as  we  have  in  Holland,  such  as  capons^  turkeys,  geese,  and  ducks. 
There  are  also  pigeoners,  who  keep  several  kinds  of  pigeons.  In 
a  word,  they  have  tame  animals  of  every  description,  including  cats 
and  dogs."* 

Among  the  species  of  wild  animals,  "  were  panthers,  bears,  buf- 
faloes, elk,  deer,  wolves,  wild-cats,  foxes,  racoons,  beavers,  otters, 
fishers,  minks,  hares,  muskrats,  rabbits,  squirrels,  skunks,  ground- 
hogs, drummers,"  &c. 

*'  The  bears  of  this  country  (says  Van  der  Donk)  arc  not  raven- 
ous, arid  do  not  subsist  on  flesh  and  carrion,  as  the  bears  of  Muscovy 
and  Greenland  do.  They  subsist  on  grass,  herbs,  nuts,  acorns,  and 
chestnuts,  which,  we  are  told  by  the  Indians,  they  will  gather  and 
eat  on  the  trees.    In  the  fall  they  always  are  fat." 

'*  The  Indians  esteem  the  fore-quarters  and  the  plvcJcs  as  excel- 
lent food.    I  have  never  tasted  the  meat,  but  several  Christians, 

•N.Y.H.  C.N.S.,vol.I.,  p.  les. 


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WEST    INDIA   COMPANY'S   STORE.  19 

who  have  eaten  bear's  flesh,  say  it  is  as  good  as  any  swine's  flesh  or 
pork  can  be. 

*'  Buffaloes  are  tolerable  plenty.  These  animals  mostly  keep  to- 
wards the  southwest,  where  few  people  go.  Their  meat  is  excellent, 
and  more  desirable  than  the  flesh  of  the  deer,  although  it  is  much 
coarser.  Their  skins,  when  dressed,  are  heavy  enough  for  collars 
and  harness.  These  animals  are  not  very  wild,  and  some  persons 
are  of  opinion  that  they  may  be  domesticated  and  tamed."* 

Of  elk.  Van  der  Donk  says,  "  I  have  heard  from  the  mouth  of  a 
Jesuit,  who  had  been  taken  prisoner  by  the  Mohawk  Indians  and 
released  by  our  people,  and  came  to  me,  that  there  were  many  wild 
forest  oxen  in  Canada  and  Nova  Francia,  which,  in  Latin,  they 
name  boves  silvestreSj  (the  moose,  or  elk,)  which  are  as  large  as 
horses,  having  long  hair  on  their  necks  like  the  mane  of  a  horse, 
and  cloven  hoofs;  but  that,  like  the  buffalo,  the  animals  were  not 
fierce." 

Another  writer  says,  "  I  have  also  eaten  here  several  times  of 
elks,  which  were  very  fat,  and  tasted  something  like  venison." 

"  In  the  forests  is  great  plenty  of  deer,  which  in  harvest-time  and 
autumn  are  as  fat  as  any  Holland  deer  can  be.  I  ha^e  had  them 
with  fat  more  than  two  fingers  thick  on  the  ribs,  so  that  they  were 
nothing  else  than  clear  fat,  and  could  hardly  be  eaten." 

"  We  seldom  pass  through  the  fields  without  seeing  deer,  more  or 
less,  and  we  frequently  see  them  in  flocks.  The  year  before  I  came 
here,  (1641,)  there  were  so  many  turkeys  and  deer  that  they  came 
to  the  houses  and  hog-pens  to  feed,  and  were  taken  by  the  Indians 
with  so  little  trouble,  that  a  deer  was  sold  to  the  Dutch  for  a  lorf 
of  breads  or  a  knife ,  or  even  a  tobacco-pipe;  but  now  we  commonly 
give  for  a  large  deer  six  or  seven  guilders."! 

*'  The  wild  birds  were  as  numerous  as  the  wild  animals.  Eagles, 
falcons,  sparrow-hawks,  sailing-hawks,  kites,  ravens,  castrills,  crows, 
cat-owls,  turkyes,  partridges,  pheasants,  woodcocks,  snipes,  quails, 
cranes,  herons,  pigeons,  land-runners,  woodpeckers,  thrushes,  black- 
birds," &C.J  Van  der  Donk  says,  "  The  most  important  fowl  of  the 
country  is  the  wild  turkey.  They  resemble  the  tame  turkyes  of  the 
Netherlands.  Those  birds  are  common  in  the  woods  all  over  the 
country,  and  are  found  in  large  flocks,  from  twenty  to  forty  in  a 
flock.  They  are  large,  heavy,  fat,  and  fine,  weighing  from  twenty 
to  thirty  pounds  each,  and  I  have  heard  of  one  that  weighed  thirty- 
two  pounds.  They  differ  little  in  taste  from  the  tame  turkeys;  but 
the  epicures  prefer  the  wild  kind.  They  are  best  in  the  fall  of  the 
year,  when  the  Indians  will  usually  sell  a  turkey  for  ten  stivers. 

•  O'Callagfaan.  f  Ibid.  t  Megapolensis. 


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20  WEST    INDIA   COMPANY'S   STORE. 

Sometimes  the  turkeys  are  caught  with  dogs  in  the  snow;  but  the 
greatest  number  are  shot  at  night  from  the  trees.  The  Indians  take 
many  in  snares,  when  the  weather  changes  in  winter.  Then  they 
lay  bulbous  roots,  which  the  turkeys  are  fond  of,  in  the  small  rills 
and  streams  of  water,  which  the  birds  take  up,  when  they  are  en- 
snared and  held  until  the  artful  Indian  takes  the  turkey  as  his 
prize." 

"  There  are  also  several  kinds  of  quails  in  the  country,  some  of 
which  are  smaller,  (common  quail  J  and  others  larger,  (the  partridge 
ov  pheasant,)  than  those  of  the  Netherlands.  In  the  Netherlands  it 
is  not  believed  that  they  will  alight  and  sit  in  trees ;  but  it  is  true 
that  many  {partridges)  are  shot  from  trees  in  this  country.  I  have 
done  it  several  times,  and  have  killed  a  hundred  or  more  from  trees. 
I  have  also  heard  from  respectable  authority  that  eleven  heath- 
fowls  {prairie  hen)  have  been  killed  at  a  shot — off  a  palisade 
fence.  There  are  also  woodcocks,  birdcocks,  heath-fowls,  pheasants, 
wood  and  water  snipes,  &c.,  and  many  cranes,  of  which  great  num- 
bers are  shot  on  the  mowed  lands  in  the  fall  of  the  year,  and  they 
are  fine  for  the  table.    Quacks  and  bitterns  are  also  plenty. 

"The  pigeons,  which  resemble  coal-pigeons,  are  astonishingly 
plenty.  Those  are  most  numerous  in  the  spring  and  fall  of  the 
year,  when  they  are  seen  in  such  numbers,  in  flocks,  that  they  resem- 
ble the  clouds  in  the  heavens,  and  obstruct  the  rays  of  the  sun." 
"The  Indians,  when  they  find  the  breeding-places  of  the  pigeons, 
(at  which  they  assemble  in  numberless  thousands,)  frequently  re- 
move to  those  places  with  their  wives  and  children,  to  the  number 
of  two  or  three  hundred  in  a  company,  where  they  live  a  month  or 
more  on  the  young  pigeons,  which  they  take,  after  pushing  them 
from  their  nests  with  poles  and  sticks." 

Of  water-fowls,  there  "were  swans,  geese,  pelicans,  ducks,  teal, 
widgeons,  brant,  coots,  divers  and  eel-shovelers."  "We  find  these 
principally  in  the  spring  and  fall  of  the  year.  At  other  seasons  they 
are  not  as  plenty.  But  at  those  seasons,  the  waters,  by  their  move- 
ments, appear  to  be  alive  with  water-fowls ;  and  the  people  who 
reside  near  the  water  are  frequently  disturbed  in  their  rest  at  night 
by  the  noise  of  the  water-fowls,  particularly  by  the  swans,  which,  in 
their  seasons,  are  so  plenty  that  the  bays  and  shores  where  they  resort 
appear  as  if  they  were  dressed  in  white  drapery," 

"  There  are  also  three  kinds  of  wild  geese.  The  first  and  best  kind 
are  the  gray  geese,  {Canada  geese)  which  are  larger  than  the  Neth- 
erlands geese,  but  not  so  large  as  the  swans."  "A  great  many  of 
those  fowls  are  shot,  and  they  are  esteemed  before  the  other  kinds 
for  the  table.    I  have  known  a  gunner  named  Henry  de  Backer 


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WEST   INDIA   COMPANY'S   STORE.  21 

who  killed  eleyen  gray  geese  out  of  a  large  flock  at  one  shot  from 
his  gun.    The  other  kinds  are  the  black  geese,  and  the  white-heads." 

Of  the  fish  taken  *'in  the  fresh  water,  were  salmon,  sturgeon, 
striped  bass,  drums,  shad,  carp,  perch,  pike,  trout,  thick-heads,  suck- 
ers, sunfish,  catfish,  eels,  lampreys,  divers,  mullets,  or  frost-fish. 
Those  of  the  sea,  codfish,  shellfish,  weekfish,  halibut,  herring,  mack- 
erel, thornback,  flounders,  plaice,  bream,  blackfish,  seal,  lobster,  oys- 
ters, crabs,  periwinkle,  clams,  turtle,  and  porpoises." 

"All  the  waters  of  New  Netherlands  are  rich  with  fishes.  Stur- 
geons are  plenty  in  the  rivers  at  their  proper  season ;  but  these  fish 
are  not  esteemed,  and  when  large,  are  not  eaten.  No  person  takes 
the  trouble  to  salt  or  souse  them  for  profit;  and  the  roes,  from  which 
the  costly  caviaer  is  prepared,  are  cast  away.  Salmon  are  plenty 
in  some  rivers,  and  the  striped  bass  are  plenty  in  all  the  rivers  and 
bays  of  the  sea."  "The  drums  are  a  tolerably  good  fish.  I  have 
heard  it  said,  that  the  drums  were  named  thirteens  when  the  Chris- 
tians first  began  fishing  in  the  New  Netherlands.  Then,  every  one 
was  desirous  to  see  the  fishes  which  were  caught,  for  the  purpose  of 
discovering  whether  the  same  were  known  to  them,  and  if  they  did 
not  know  the  fish,  then  they  gave  it  a  name.  First  in  the  fishing 
season,  they  caught  many  shad,  which  they  named  Elft,  (eleventh.) 
Later,  they  caught  the  striped  bass,  which  they  named  Tioalfi, 
(twelfth.)  Later  still,  they  caught  the  drums,  which  they  named 
Dertieneny  (thirteenth.)  For  those  fish  succeeded  each  other  in 
their  seasons,  and  the  same  are  still  known  by  the  names  which  were 
thus  derived."* 

In  addition  to  the  above  list  of  fish.  Van  der  Donk  adds,  '*  snook, 
forrels,  palings,  brickens,  dunns,  roah,  scoll,  and  shecphead.  The 
latter  are  formed  like  the  sunfish,  but  much  heavier,  with  cross 
stripes,  being  about  the  weight  of  the  largest  carps.  They  have 
teeth  in  the  fore-part  of  the  mouth  like  a  sheep,  but  are  not  vora- 
cious, and  are  an  excellent  fish.  There  is  another  species  of  fish, 
called  blackfish,  which  are  held  in  high  estimation  by  the  Christians. 
It  is  as  brown  as  a  seek,  formed  like  the  carp,  but  not  so  coarse  in 
its  scales.  When  this  kind  of  fish,  which  are  plenty,  is  served  upon 
the  table,  it  goes  before  all  others,  for  every  person  prefers  it. 

"There  are  also  porpoises,  herring-hogs,  potheads  or  sharks,  tur- 
tles, Ac,  and  whales,  of  which  there  are  none  caught,  but  if  prepa- 
rations were  made  for  the  purpose,  then  it  might  be  easily  cffboted ; 
but  our  colonists  have  not  advanced  far  enough  to  pursue  whaling. 
A  lost  Inrd,  (whale,)  however,  is  frequently  cast  and  stranded,  which 
is  cut  up." 

•  O'Callaghan. 


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22  WEST    INDIA   COMPANY'S   STORE. 

The  same  writer,  in  his  description  of  the  North  River ^  says:  "I 
cannot  refrain,  although  somewhat  ont  of  place,  to  relate  a  very  sin- 
gular occurrence  which  happened  in  the  month  of  March,  1647,  at 
the  time  of  a  great  freshet,  caused  by  the  fresh  water  flowing  down 
from  above,  by  which  the  water  of  the  (North)  river  became  nearly 
fresh  to  the  Bay,  when  at  ordinary  seasons  the  salt  water  flows  up 
from  twenty  to  twenty-four  miles*  from  the  sea.  At  this  season, 
two  whales,  of  common  size,  swam  up  the  river  forty  miles,  from 
which  place  one  of  them  returned  and  stranded  about  twelve  miles 
from  the  sea,  near  which  place  four  others  also  stranded  the  same 
year.  The  other  ran  up  the  river  and  grounded  near  the  great  Char 
hoos  Falls,  about  forty-three  miles  from  the  sea.  This  fish  was  tot 
erably  fat,  for  although  the  citizens  of  Rensselaerwyck  broiled  out 
a  great  quantity  of  train  oil,  still  the  whole  river  (the  current  being 
still  rapid)  was  oily  for  three  weeks,  and  covered  with  grease.  As 
the  fish  lay  rotting,  the  air  was  infected  with  its  stench  to  such  a 
degree  that  the  smell  was  ofiensive  and  perceptible  for  two  miles  to 
leeward.  For  what  purpose  those  whales  ascended  the  river  so  far, 
it  being  full  forty  miles  from  all  salt  or  brackish  water,  it  is  difiicult 
to  say,  unless  their  great  desire  for  fish,  which  were  plenty  at  this 
season,  led  them  onward." 

"Lobsters  are  plenty  in  many  places.  Some  of  those  are  very 
large,  being  from  five  to  six  feet  in  length;  others,  again,  are  from  a 
foot  to  a  foot  and  a  half  long,  which  are  the  best  for  the  table. 
There  are  also  crabs,  like  those  of  the  Netherlands,  some  of  which 
are  altogether  soft.  Those,  the  people  call  weak-crabs,  and  they 
make  excellent  bait  for  hook-fishing. 

"There  are  also  sea-cocks,  (horned  crabs;)  sea-colts,  sea-conks,  and 
periwinkles  are  very  plenty,  which  in  some  seasons  are  cast  ashore 
by  the  sea  in  great  numbers.    From  these  the  Indians  make  wampum. 

"  Oysters  are  very  plenty  in  many  places.  Some  of  these  are  like 
the  Colchester  oysters,  and  are  fit  to  be  eaten  raw;  others  are  very 
large,  w^herein  pearls  are  frequently  found;  but  as  they  are  of  a 
brownish  colour,  they  are  not  valuable.  The  price  for  oysters  is  usu- 
ally from  eight  to  ten  stivers  per  hundred. 

"Muscles  of  difi'erent  kinds  arc  plenty;  the  St.  Jacob's  and  mother- 
of-pearl  shells,  with  alis  or  stone  crutches." 

"  There  are  also  shrimps  and  tortoises  in  the  waters  and  on  the 
land.  Some  persons  prepare  delicious  dishes  from  the  water  terrar 
pin,  which  is  luscious  food." 

Of  vegetables.  Van  der  Donk  says:  "The  garden  products  in  the 
New  Netherlands  are  very  numerous ;  some  of  them  have  been  known 
*  A  Dutch  mile  is  about  three  Eagliah  miles. 


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WEST    INDIA   COMPANY'S   STORE.  23 

to  the  natives  from  the  earliest  times,  aiid  others  introduced  from 
different  parts  of  the  world,  but  chiefly  from  the  Netherlands. 

'^They  consist,  then,  of  various  kinds  of  salads,  cabbages,  pars- 
nips, carrots,  beets,  endive,  succory,  finckel,  sorrel,  dill,  spinage, 
radishes,  parsley,  chervil,  (or  sweet  cicely,)  cresses,  onions,  leeks," 
"together  with  laurel,  artichokes,  and  asparagus." 

"The  herb-garden  is  also  tolerably  well  supplied  with  rosemary, 
lavender,  hyssop,  thyme,  sage,  marjoram,  balm,  holy  onions,  worm- 
wood, belury,  chives,  and  clary;  also  pimpumel,  dragon's-blood, 
five-finger,  tarragon,  (or  dragon's-wort,)  &c." 

"The  pumpkin  grows  with  little  or  no  cultivation,  and  is  so  sweet 
and  dry  that  it  is  used,  with  the  addition  of  vinegar  and  water,  for 
stewing,  in  the  same  manner  as  apples;  and  notwithstanding  that  it 
is  here  (Netherlands)  generally  despised  as  a  mean,  unsubstantial 
article  of  food,  it  is  there  (here)  of  so  good  a  quality  that  our  coun- 
trymen hold  it  in  high  estimation." 

"The  English,  (in  New  England  J  who  in  general  think  much 
of  what  gratifies  the  palate,  use  it  also  in  pastry,"  (pumpkin  pies, 
no  doubt  J  "and  understand  making  a  beverage  from  it."  "  The 
Spanish  (or  mammoth  pumpkin)  is  considered  the  best." 

"  The  natives  have  another  species  of  this  vegetable  peculiar  to 
themselves,  called  by  our  people  quaasiens,  (squashes;)  a  name  de- 
rived from  the  aborigines,  as  the  plant  was  not  known  to  us  before 
our  intercourse  with  them.  It  is  a  delightful  fruit;  as  well  to  the 
eye,  on  account  of  its  fine  variety  of  colors,  as  to  the  mouth,  for  its 
agreeable  taste."  "  The  natives  make  great  account  of  this  vege- 
table; some  of  the  Netherlanders,  too,  consider  it  quite  good,  but 
others  do  not  esteem  it  very  highly." 

"  Melons,  likewise,  grow  in  the  New  Netherlands  very  luxuriantly, 
witiiout  requiring  the  land  to  be  prepared  or  manured;  they  will 
thrive,  too,  in  newly-cleared  wood-land,  when  it  is  freed  from  weeds ; 
and  in  this  situation  the  fruit,  which  they  call  Spanish  pork,  grows 
large,  and  very  abundant.  I  had  the  curiosity  to  weigh  one  of  these 
melons,  and  found  its  weight  to  be  seventeen  pounds." 

"The  citrull,  or  water-citron,  (icater-melonj  also  grows  there, 
(here ;)  a  fruit  that  we  have  not  in  the  Netherlands,  and  is  only 
known  from  its  being  occasionally  brought  from  Portugal,  except 
to  those  who  have  traveled  in  warm  climates."  "  They  grow  ordi- 
narily to  the  size  of  a  man's  head.  I  have  seen  them  as  large  as 
the  biggest  Leyden  cabbages,  but  in  general  they  are  somewhat  ob- 
long." "  When  they  are  to  be  eaten,  the  rind  is  cut  off  to  about 
the  thickness  of  the  finger;  all  the  rest  is  good,  consisting  of  a 
spongy  pulp,  full  of  liquor,  in  which  the  seeds  are  imbedded ;  and 


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24  WEST   INDIA   COMPANY'S   STORE. 

if  the  fruit  is  sound  and  fully  ripe,  it  melts  as  soon  as  it  enters  the 
mouth,  and  nothing  is  left  but  the  seeds/' 

''Cucumbers  are  abundant.  Calabashes,  or  gourds,  also  grow 
there :  they  are  half  as  long  as  the  pumpkin,  but  have  within  very 
little  pulp,  and  are  sought  chiefly  on  account  of  the  shell,  which  is 
hard  and  durable,  and  is  used  to  hold  seeds,  spices,  &c.  It  is  the 
common  water-pail  of  the  natives,  and  I  have  seen  one  so  large 
that  it  would  contain  more  than  a  bushel,"  (about  three  pecks.) 

''  Turnips,  also,  are  as  good  and  fine  as  any  sand-rapes  that  are 
raised  in  the  Netherlands." 

**  Of  beans  there  are  several  kinds ;  but  the  large  Windsor  bean, 
which  the  farmers  call  tessejij  or  hot-house  beans,  and  also  the  horse- 
bean,  will  not  fill  out  their  pods."  "  The  Turkish  beans  which  our 
people  have  introduced  there  grow  wonderfully ;  they  fill  out  re- 
markably well,  and  are  much  cultivated." 

"Before  the  arrival  of  the  Netherlanders,  the  Indians  raised 
beans  of  various  kinds  and  colors,  but  generally  too  coarse  to  be 
eaten  green,  or  to  be  pickled,  except  the  blue  sort,  which  are  abun- 
dant ;  they  somewhat  tend  to  flatulency,  like  those  we  raise  in  Hol- 
land ;  but  in  other  respects  they  furnish  an  excellent  food,  of  which 
the  Indians  are  especially  fond.  They  have  a  peculiar  mode  of 
planting  them,  which  our  people  have  learned  to  practice :  when 
the  Turkish  wheat,  (Indian  corn,)  or,  as  it  is  called,  maize,  is  half  a 
foot  above  the  ground,  they  plant  the  beans  around  it,  and  let  them 
grow  together.  The  coarse  stalk  serves  as  a  bean-prop,  and  the 
beans  run  upon  it,  and  thus  two  crops  are  gathered  at  the  same 
time." 

Another  writer  (De  Vries)  says  of  Indian  corn,  or  maize,  **  They 
sow  the  maize  in  April  and  May,"  and  gather  it  in  September  and 
October;  "and  when  they  have  shelled  the  corn,  they  bury  it  in 
holes,  which  they  have  previously  covered  with  mats,  and  so  keep 
as  much  as  they  want  for  the  winter  and  while  hunting."  "  When 
they  travel,  they  take  a  flat  stone,  and  press  it  with  another  stone 
placed  upon  the  first ;  and  when  it  is  pressed,  they  have  little  bas- 
kets, which  they  call  notassen,  and  which  are  made  of  a  kind  of 
hemp,  the  same  as  fig-frails — which  they  make  to  serve  them  as 
sieves — and  thus  make  their  meal.  They  make  flat  cakes  of  the  meal 
mixed  with  water,  as  large  as  a  farthing  cake  in  this  country,  and 
bake  them  in  the  ashes,  first  wrapping  a  vine-leaf  or  maize-leaf 
around  them.  When  they  are  sufficiently  baked  in  the  ashes,  they 
make  good,  palatable  bread. 

"Our  Netherlanders  raise  good  wheat,  rye,  barley,  oats,  and  peas, 
and  can  brew  as  good  beer  here  as  in  our  fatherland,  for  good  hops 


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WEST   INDIA  COMPANY'S   STORE.  25 

grow  in  the  woods ;  they  are  in  want  of  nothing  but  men  to  do  the 
work." 

"  Barley  grows  well  in  the  country,  but  it  is  not  much  needed." 
"Flax  and  hemp  will  grow  fine,  but  as  the  women  do  not  spin 
much,  and  the  Indians  have  hemp  in  abundance  in  the  woods,  from 
which  they  make  strong  ropes  and  nets,  for  these  reasons  very  little 
flax  is  raised." 

"Wild  fruit  was  equally  abundant,"  observes  another  writer; 
"consisting  of  acorns,  (some  of  which  were  very  sweet,)  chestnuts, 
beech-nuts,  walnuts,  butternuts,  hazlenuts,  mulberries,  cherries,  cur- 
rants, plums,  gooseberries,  medlars,  bilberries,  blackberries,  rasp- 
berries, cranberries,  and  strawberries;  the  latter  in  such  abundance, 
that  people  lay  down  in  the  fields  and  ate  them  to  satiety.  Pig- 
nuts, artichokes,  wild  leeks  and  onions,  wild-peas,  and  other  wild 
firuit,  also  abounded." 

Of  imported  fruits,  Van  der  Donk  says:  "The  Netherlands  setr 
tiers,  who  are  lovers  of  fruit,  on  observing  that  the  climate  was 
suitable  to  the  production  of  fruit-trees,  have  brought  over  and 
planted  various  kinds  of  apple  and  pear  trees,  which  thrive  well. 
Those  also  grow  from  the  seeds,  of  which  I  have  seen  many,  which, 
without  grafting,  bore  delicious  fruit  in  the  sixth  year."  "  The 
English  have  brought  over  the  first  quinces,  and  we  have  also 
brought  over  stocks  and  seeds,  which  thrive  well.  Orchard  cher- 
ries thrive  well,  and  produce  large  fruit.  Spanish  cherries,  fore- 
runners, morellaes,  of  every  kind  we  have,  as  in  the  Netherlands; 
and  the  trees  bear  better,  because  the  blossoms  are  not  injured  by 
the  frosts." 

"  The  peaches,  which  are  sought  after  in  the  Netherlands,  grow 
wonderfully  well  here."  "  We  have  also  introduced  morecotoons, 
(a  variety  of  the  peach,)  apricots,  several  sorts  of  the  best  plums, 
almonds,  persimmons,  cornelian  cherries,  figs,  several  sorts  of  cur- 
rants, gooseberries,  calissiens,  and  thorn-apples." 

"Although  the  land  is  full  of  many  kinds  of  grapes,  we  still  want 
settings  of  the  best  kinds  from  Germany,  for  the  purpose  of  enabling 
our  wine-planters  here  to  select  the  best  kinds,  and  to  propagate 
the  same."  "The  entire  land,  both  forest  and  bottom-land,"  ob- 
serves O'Callaghan,  "was,  moreover,  covered  with  vines,  climbing 
up  the  loftiest  trees,  or  creeping  along  the  lowly  valleys,  and  bear- 
ing loads  of  grapes :  some  white,  some  blue ;  some  large,  some  small ; 
some  very  juicy,  and  others  not  so  good,  yet  all  promising,  if  prop- 
erly cultivated,  an  ample  return  to  the  vine-dresser."  "In  short, 
every  kind  of  fruit  which  grows  in  the  Netherlands  is  plenty  already 
in  the  New  Netherlands,  which  have  been  introduced  by  tiie  lovers 


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26  WEST   INDIA   COMPANY^S   STORE. 

of  agriculture;  and  the  fruits  thrive  better  here,  particularly  such 
kinds  as  require  a  warmer  climate." 

<'  Why  moarn  about  Brazil,  full  of  base  Portagaese? 
When  Van  der  Donck  shows  so  far  mach  better  fere ; 
Where  wheat-fills  golden  ears,  and  grapes  abound  in  trees ; 
Where  frait  and  kine  are  good  with  little  care." 

Evert  JVUuwenhi^, 

At  this  early  day,  it  will  be  seen,  the  natural  advantages  of  this 
beautiful  country — ^producing  so  much,  and  still  capable  of  grow- 
ing every  luxury  wanted  by  man — were  not  fully  appreciated,  so 
badly  was  it  managed  and  sadly  misgoverned  by  many  of  the  Com- 
pany's  servants,  more  especially  by  Governor  Kieft  himself,  who 
afterwards  confesses  that  he  was  instructed  to  do  sol  "For  he 
said  he  had  express  orders  to  exact  the  contributions  from  the  In- 
dians"— to  prosecute  the  people — "when  there  was  no  offence,  and  to 
consider  a  partial  offence  an  entire  one,  and  so  forth."*  These  un- 
popular acts,  and  especially  his  exactions  and  enmity  towards  the 
Indians,  the  consequences  of  which  had  become  very  grievous  to  the 
settlers,  and  more  particularly  to  those  who  lived  away  from  the 
protection  of  the  Fort,  as  the  settlement  then  extended  about  thirty 
English  miles  to  the  east,  and  twenty-one  to  the  north  and  south 
from  Fort  Amsterdam — to  assist  in  reforming  some  of  these  griev- 
ances, the  Commonalty  at  large  chose  "twelve  men"  to  co-operate 
with  the  Governor  and  Council. 

Among  some  of  the  local  improvements  which  were  introduced  in 
1642,  these  "twelve  men"  represented  that,  in  consequence  of  the 
sale  in  New  Netherlands  of  cows  and  other  stock  by  the  English, 
the  cattle  owned  and  introduced  by  the  Dutch  were  held  in  small  es- 
teem, and  were  not  so  valuable  as  they  had  heretofore  been." 
That  "it  was  near-sighted  and  destructive  to  the  improvement  of 
their  own  stock ;  and  that  the  English  should  not  bo  permitted  here- 
after to  sell  either  cows  or  goats  within  the  Dutch  jurisdiction,  but 
that  this  privilege  should  be  confined  to  oxen  and  poultry."! 

The  Dutchmen,  at  this  early  day,  began  to  admit  the  superior  qual- 
ities of  the  red  catUe  of  New  England ;  at  least  in  producing  better 
working  oxen  than  their  Dutch  breed;  but  they  wished  to  exclude 
their  breeding  cattle.  Theirs  were  generally  good  milkers,  pro- 
ducing good  fleshy  beef,  and  withal,  this  solicited  exclusion  of  the 
English  stock  would  tend  to  enhance  the  value  of  their  own  breed- 
ing stock.  The  Governor,  however,  concluded  that  the  "English 
should  not  be  permitted  to  sell  cows  or  goats  for  the  future  within 
*  Murphy's  translations.  f  0*Callagban. 


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WEST   INDIA   COMPANY'S   STORE.  27 

New  Netherlands/'  In  this  act,  he  had  acceded  to  the  wishes  of 
the  "twelve  men,"  but  many  of  their  movements  and  acts  were 
looked  upon  by  him  with  a  jealous  eye,  and  by  a  proclamation  he 
disbanded  them,  and  forbade  them  to  meet. 

His  enmity  towards  the  Indians  also  was  such,  that  he  had  made 
op  his  mind  to  attack  them  unawares,  and  without  notice,  and  ex- 
pressed himself  to  De  Tries,  who  was  dining  with  him  one  day,  vhat 
*'he  had  a  great  desire,  he  said,  to  make  the  savages  wipe  their 
chops.''  Sure  enough,  the  night  after,  he  ordered  an  attack  to  be 
made  upon  two  separate  parties  of  Indians  that  had  moved  near  the 
settlers,  as  a  sort  of  protection  from  a  stronger  tribe  which  was  at 
war  with  them.  So,  in  the  silent  hour  of  midnight,  Kieft's  brave 
and  valiant  soldiers  approached  the  unsuspecting  victims,  and  in 
cool  blood  cowardly  murdered  above  one  hundred  of  them.  This 
unwise  and  cruel  act  caused  all  the  neighboring  Indians,  those  who 
were  friendly  as  well  as  other  tribes,  to  retaliate,  by  murdering  all 
the  men  they  could  find,  (leaving  the  women  and  children,)  burn- 
ing and  desolating  the  farms,  destroying  the  crops,  killing  the  cat- 
tle, hogs,  Ac,  and  driving  the  settlers  panic-stricken  into  the  town. 

Within  two  weeks  after,  peace  was  proposed,  and  partly  efifected 
with  a  few  Indians ;  yet  many  were  not  satisfied,  and  they  again  com- 
menced murdering  families  and  individuals,  and  some  who  were  quite 
near  the  Fort.  The  inhabitants  were  now  almost  confined  to  the 
precincts  of  the  fortifications,  and  in  a  dreadful  situation ;  so  they 
appealed  to  the  Honorable  Lords  in  Holland,  and  say:  "Our  pop- 
ulation consists  for  the  most  part  of  women  and  children ;  the  free- 
men (not  counting  the  English)  are  about  two  hundred  in  numbers, 
who  must  protect  by  force  of  arms  their  families,  which  now  lie  con- 
cealed in  straw  huts  around  outside  the  forts."  The  cattle  are  partly 
burnt  and  killed ;  the  remainder  conveyed  to  the  fort  on  the  Manhat- 
tes,  where,  for  want  of  forage,  they  must  starve  through  the  coming 
winter,  if  not  immediately  slaughtered."* 

Still  further  to  add  to  their  miserable  condition,  internal  troubles 
broke  out  among  themselves.  "  Complaints  were  daily  made  of 
stealing  and  killing  of  hogs,  goats,  as  well  as  of  the  irregularities 
which  increased  so  fast  that  it  'threatened  to  end  in  plunder  and 
robbing/  and  it  was  found  that  people  would  at  last  murder  one 
another  in  consequence  of  the  impunity  of  the  delinquents." 

The  situation  of  the  country  at  that  time  was  certainly  a  yery  dis- 
couraging one ;  with  a  jealous,  sordid,  and  an  unpopular  Governor, 
and  the  people  almost  rent  asunder,  distressed  by  their  losses  of 
friends  and  protectors,  of  property,  and  many  of  them  almost  in 

^  O'CaUagfaan. 


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28  WEST   INDIA   COMPANY'S   STORE. 

despair.  However,  assistance  came;  their  complaints  and  appeals 
had  been  heard;  the  Dutch  West  India  Company,  in  1647,  recalled 
Governor  Kieft,  and  sent  a  man  much  more  fitted  for  the  position 
than  either  who  had  preceded  him. 

Peter  Stuyvesant,  the  last  of  the  Dutch  Governors  in  this  city, 
arrived  in  the  month  of  May,  1647,  when  he  assumed  the  reins  of 
government.  His  character  appears  somewhat  pompous  and  arbi- 
trary, yet  he  had  the  vigilance,  firmness,  and  force  which  were  neces- 
sary to  raise  the  country  up  from  the  disorder  and  confusion  in 
which  he  found  it.  He  made  friends  of  the  Indians,  and  introduced 
a  successful  trade  with  them,  as  well  for  the  resident  traders  as  the 
"  West  India  Company." 

Numerous  proclamations  and  ordinances  of  a  stringent  character 
soon  appeared,  which  were  posted  in  the  "  public  market-places."* 
In  the  following  month  of  July,  an  ordinance,  in  relation  to  the  tres- 
passing of  cattle,  was  enacted,  declaring  that  all  the  inhabitants  of 
the  New  Netherlands  are  hereby  charged  and  commanded  to  set  off  • 
and  put  into  good  fence  all  their  plantations,  so  that  the  cattle 
therein  may  be  kept  from  committing  trespass ;  which  cattle, 
whether  they  be  horses,  kine,  and  in  a  special  manner  goats  and 
hogs,  must  be  taken  care  of,  or  otherwise  disposed  of,  that  they 
cannot  commit  any  trespass ;  to  this  end  the  Fiscal  Van  Dyck  should 
build  a  pounds  in  which  cattle  shall  be  detained  until  the  damages 
shall  have  been  made  good,  and  the  fees  of  officers  shall  have  been 
paid :  let  every  one  take  warning,  and  look  out  for  costs." 

In  the  early  part  of  the  following  year,  (1648,)  a  law  was  intro- 
duced to  confirm  the  privileges  of  trade  in  New  Amsterdam  to  per- 
manent residents ;  for  it  was  ordered  that  henceforward  no  person 
should  keep  a  shop,  or  carry  on  any  retail  business,  except  such  as 
"  have  already  taken  the  oath  of  allegiance,"  were  rated,  at  least,  at 
from  two  to  three  thousand  guilders,  and  had  entered  into  an  en- 
gagement to  remain  in  the  country  four  successive  years,  "  and  to 
keep  fire  and  light"  at  their  own  expense.  This  regulation  was 
not,  however,  to  extend  to  "old  residents,"  who  were  to  be  allowed 
the  privileges  of  trade,  though  not  rated  as  above,  provided  they 
bound  themselves  to  remain  in  the  province  the  required  time ;  not 
to  quit  the  same  without  permission  from  the  Director  and  Council, 
nor  to  use  any  weights  or  measures  except  those  of  "Old  Amster- 
dam, to  which  we  owe  our  name ;"  and  for  the  further  encourage- 
ment of  trade,  "  each  Monday  in  the  week  was  declared  to  be  a 
market-day*'—''  as  well  for  strangers  as  residents."  The  "  strangers," 
no  doubt,  were  the  Indians  and  country  people  who  had,  prior  to 

•  City  Records. 


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WEST   INDIA   COMPANY'S    STORE.  29 

the  establishment  of  this  **  market-day/'  brought  with  them,  in  their 
skiffs  and  canoes,  their  productions,  from  the  chase,  of  the  land  and 
of  the  water;  some  of  which,  such  as  peltries,  corn,  4c.,  were  taken 
to  the  "  Company's  Store,"  either  for  the  purpose  of  trade  or  sale, 
and  the  balance  sold  to  the  residents  who  were  in  the  habit  of  find- 
ing them  at  the  '*  store,"  or  landing-place ;  but  at  no  stated  time  or 
particular  day:  therefore  it  appeared  necessary  to  appoint  a  par- 
ticular day — "Monday  of  each  week  a  market-day,"  when  they 
would  be  sure  to  find  each  other,  near 'this  depot  of  trade  or  market, 
which,  no  doubt,  gave  the  space  between  the  "Company's  Store" 
and  the  "Fort "  the  name  of  "Market-field."* 

About  this  period  an  "Annual  Pair,"  or  "kermis,"  was  also 
established,  for  the  sale  of  home  productions,  (those  appointed  pre- 
vious were  for  cattle  and  hogs,)  to  commence  on  the  first  Monday 
after  the  "feast  of  St.  Bartholomew,"  (24th  of  August,)  and  continue 
for  ten  days ;  at  which  all  persons  were  privileged  to  sell  their  goods 
from  their  tents.t 

Many  of  their  productions  were  sold  for  cash,  or  such  currency 
as  was  then  recognized  as  such ;  a  great  deal  of  which  was  Indian 
money,  called  "  tvampumy'  or  seatcant,  (or  zeawant,)  "  Judf-beavers, 
and  beaver^^  skins.  The  common  value  of  "wampum  or  seawant," 
when  strung  on  a  string,  passed  "six  white,"  or  "three  black  sea- 
want,"  for  one  stiver ;  the  value  of  "  beaver"  was  "  eight  guilders," 
or  about  three  dollars;  divided  in  "half-beavers,"  the  value  was 
much  less  in  proportion.  The  early  English  settlers,  however,  used 
their  £  8.  d.  currency  when  an  opportunity  offered.  This  Indian 
currency,  seawant^  afterwards  became  much  depreciated  in  value,  by 
the  unskillful  tinkering  at  the  currency;  it  being  loose,  not  perforated, 
and  badly  finished.  The  authorities  notice  it  at  a  meeting  held 
May  30, 1650,  and  they  "  have  observed,  both  now  and  for  a  long 
time, '  loose  seawant ;'  many  are  not  perforated,  and  half  finished, 
and  also  made  out  of  stone,  bone,  glass,  muscle-shells,  horns,  and 
even  out  of  wood,  and  broken  ones,  whereby  occasion  is  given  for 
repeated  complaints  from  the  inhabitants,  that  they  cannot  go  with 
such  seatvant  to  the  market;  nor  yet  procure  any  commodity,  not 
even  a  mean  white  loaf  of  bread,  or  a  can  of  beer  at  the  merchant's, 
the  baker's,  or  the  tapster's,  for  the  loose  seawant"  The  authorities 
resolve,  "  from  this  time  forth,  no  hose,  unperforated,  or  clumsy  sea- 
want shall  be  current,  nor  be  a  lawful  tender,  except  that  the  same 
shall  be  strung  on  one  string,  as  the  general  custom  has  been  here- 
tofore. They  ordained  that  the  common  seawant  shall  be  as 
formerly ;  that  is,  six  white,  or  three  black  seawant,  for  one  stuy ver ; 
•  O'CftUftgfaAQ  and  City  Recorda.  f  O'Callaghan. 


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30  WEST    INDIA   COMPANY'S    STORE. 

and  the  base  strung  seawant  shall  pass  eight  white,  or  four  black,  for 
one  stuyver."* 

Part  of  these  instructions  were  unheeded:  "the  base  strung  sea- 
want  being  still  refused  and  rejected  for  trifling  articles  by  shop- 
keepers, brewers,  bakers,  tapsters,  mechanics,  and  day-laborers,  to 
the  great  confusion  and  discommoding  of  the  inhabitants  in  general ; 
there  being  at  present  no  other  specie  with  which  the  inhabitants 
can  accommodate  one  another."  The  authorities,  on  the  14th  Sep- 
tember following,  "  do  ordain  and  decree,  that  the  base  strung  sea- 
want  shall  be  current — in  payment  for  small  and  daily  necessary 
commodities  in  housekeeping" — and  "  that  the  sum  of  twelve  guild- 
ers and  under  shall  be  paid  aU  in  base  strung  seawant;  from  twelve 
to  twenty-four  guilders,  half-and-half;  that  is  to  say,  half  base  and 
half  good  strung  seawant ;  from  twenty-five  guilders  to  fifty  guilders, 
one-third  base  strung^  and  two-thirds  good  strung  seawant;  and  in 
large  sums  agreeably  to  the  agreement  between  the  buyer  and 
seller."t  In  case  of  refusal,  certain  heavy  penalties  were  ordered  to 
be  inflicted.  We  find,  a  few  years  after,  one  of  the  Government 
officers  refused  to  receive  this  currency  from  Solomon  La  Schecn's 
(La  Chair)  wife,  who  appeared  in  court  on  the  17th  January,  1656, 
"with  a  certain  box  of  white  stringed  ^zeairan,^  to  the  amount  of 
ff.  84.B,  complaining  that  Warner  Wessells,  the  Farmer  of  the  Excise, 
refused  the  same,  and  will  not  give  any  license ;  and  whereas  she  is 
obstructed  in  her  business,  requests  the  W.  Court  to  decide  if  the 
same  be  good  zeawan  or  not,  and  to  order  him  accordingly  to  re- 
ceive the  same,  and  not  impede  her.  The  W.  Court  decides  that 
the  zeawan  exhibited  by  the  petitioner  is  good  merchantable  zea- 
wan, and  hath  heretofore  sealed  the  same  in  Court."t 

At  this  period  the  prices  of  several  of  the  domestic  animals  are 
noticed,  and  "  were  to  be  had  at  a  reasonable  price,  except  sheep^ 
which  the  English  (in  New  England)  do  not  sell,  and  are  rare  in 
New  Netherlands."§ 

"A  milch  cow,  with  her  2d  or  3d  calf,  ff.  130. 
A  year  old  sow,     .        .        .        .  20  to  24. 

A  sheep,  being  a  ewe,        .        .        .      20  to  24." 

"Maize  (Indian  corn)  can  be  always  had  in  season  from  the  In- 
dians;" "the  schepel  cost  ordinarily  10  to  15  stivers,  when  bought 
from  them." 

Although  the  above  valuation  of  animals  appears  to  have  been 
made  for  breeding  stock,  yet  this  valuation,  in  our  day,  usual- 
ly, would  not  vary  much  if  the  same  were  fit  for  consumption.  In 
1640  the  price  of  "fresh  meat"  was  five  stivers  (10  cents)  per  pound ; 

•  City  Records.  f  Ibid.  %  Ibid.  §  Col.  His.,  vol.  1.,  p.  869. 


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WEST    INDIA   COMPANY'S   STORE.  31 

this  period,  (1650,)  according  to  the  above,  it  could  be  afforded 
at  about  the  same  price.  Seven  yeara  afterwards  (1657)  we  find  it 
about  the  same,  by  the  following  extract  from  a  letter  of  Vice-Director 
Aldrich,  dated  April  13th,  1657,*  who  says :  "I  understand  that  pork, 
beef,  peas,  etc.,  are  to  be  had  cheaper  here  than  they  can  be  sent 
from  Holland^  to  wit:  beef  and  pork  at  4  and  5  stivers  the  pound; 
peas,  3  and  3^  guilders  the  schepel,  payable  in  merchandise,  such  as 
duffels,  linen,  etc.,  at  the  aforesaid  prices.  These,  however,  were 
the  prices  in  trading  for  merchandise,  or  other  than  the  Indian  cur- 
rency, which  had  become  much  depreciated;  instead  oifour  Hack 
smwant  passing  for  one  ativer,  as  in  1650,  it  had  been  lowered,  first 
to  six ;  tiien,  in  1659,  the  white  wampum  (or  seawant)  was  reduced 
from  12  to  16,  and  the  Uack  from  6  to  8  for  a  stiver.  The  only 
effect  of  this  was  to  oblige  the  holder  to  give  more  wampum  for  any 
article  he  might  require  from  the  trader,  who  in  return  allowed  the 
natives  a  larger  quantity  for  his  beavers,  (skins J  '  so  that  little  or 
no  benefit  accrued.'  Prices  nominally  advanced:  beavers,  which 
sold  for  12  to  14  guilders,  (seawant,)  rose  to  22  and  24  guilders; 
bread  from  14  to  22  stivers  the  8  lbs.  loaf;  beef,  9  to  10  stivers  per 
lb.;  pork,  15  to  20  stivers;  butter,  30  stivers;  common  shoes  from 
3^  to  12  guilders  the  pair;  coarse  stockings  from  36  stivers  to  4  or 
5  guilders  the  pair;  and  wrought  iron  18  to  20  stivers  the  lb. 
Beaver  and  specie  were  all  this  while  of  equal  value,  and  the  differ- 
ence between  these  and  wampum  was  50  per  cent.  Finally,  the 
price  of  beavers  fell,  in  1663,  from  8  guilders  (specie)  to  4^  guild- 
ers; white  w^ampum  from  16  to  8,  black  from  8  to  4  for  a  stiver; 
and  this  was  the  state  of  the  currency  when  the  English  came  into 
possession  of  the  province."t 

Let  us  now  return  to  the  period  of  about  1650,  when  the  increas- 
ing numbers  of  inhabitanti  had  caused  trade  to  rapidly  advance,  and 
many  who  were  anxious  to  make  a  good  or  quick  bargain  on  the 
*'marke^day,"  were  on  the  lookout,  watching  and  waiting  at  the 
beach  or  strand  at  the  East  River  side,  for  the  market-boats  and 
canoes,  which  were  sometimes  belated  in  consequence  of  the  tides, 
storms,  ice,  or  other  causes ;  and  when  landed,  the  inhabitants  were 
as  ready  to  purchase  there  at  the  strand  as  the  farmers  and  Indians 
were  to  dispose  of  their  produce,  to  save  them  the  trouble  of  carry- 
ing it  up  to  the  *' market-field."  This  strand,  which  had  been  the  reg- 
ular landing-place  for  small  craft  many  years  previous,  extended 
along  up  the  shore  from  about  the  present  Whitehall  Street,  along 
the  line  of  the  present  Pearl,  to  the  foot  of  Broad  Street,  then  called 
tbo  (Grafht)  common  ditch  or  creek.  This  **  creek,"  at  that  early 
*  Hoi.  Doc ,  vol  II,  p.  6.  t  O'Calltghao. 


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32  WEST   INDIA   COMPANY^S   STORE. 

period,  did  not  appear  to  be  in  a  proper  condition  for  the  accommo* 
dation  of  the  market  and  other  boats;  but  it  is  supposed  to  have 
been  in  a  state  of  nature;  the  shores  on  each  side  muddy  and  full  of 
weeds,  and  in  winter  obstructed  with  ice,  so  that  it  appearednot  to 
have  been  used  much  until  about  the  year  1660,  although  they  were 
at  work  filling  it  up  on  the  sides,  in  1657  and  '58,  as  will  appear 
from  the  City  Records^  February  21,  of  the  latter  year,  when  "  the 
three  laborers  of  the  Graft  (canal)  being  summoned  to  court,  ap- 
pearing, are  asked  bow  it  happens  that  they  do  not  come  any  more 
to  work;  answer — the  weather  is  unfavorable;  whereupon,  they 
were  told  that  complaints  were  made  that  there  has  nothing  filled 
up — and  therefore  ordered  to  proceed  to  do  so,  and  that  they  should 
not  stop."  Then,  on  the  7th  of  March,  1659,  "  Resolvert  Waldron 
is  ordered  to  appear  in  Court,  to  receive  a  commission  to  superin- 
tend the  Grafht,  according  to  the  placard  dated  3d  December,  1657, 
published  in  front  of  the  City  Hall,  and  renewed  on  the  4th  of 
March,  1659.  He  was  ordered  to  take  good  care,  and  superintend 
on  the  newly-constructed  *  Graft,'  that  no  filth  be  cast  into  it;  also, 
that  the  boats,  canoes,  and  skiffs  be  placed  in  regular  order  therein." 

We  now  pass  over  a  period  of  almost  twenty  years,  when  we  find 
it  not  yet  dyked,  nor  the  street  {Broad)  leveled  or  paved,  which  is 
shown  from  the  proceedings,  as  follows:  "Ordered,  that  all  and 
every  p(er)son  &  p(er)son3  being  inhabitants  and  living  within  the 
streete  called  Here  Graft,  shall  forth  with  &  without  delay  fill  up 
the  Graft  Ditch  or  Common  shoare,  &  make  the  same  level,  with 
the  streete,  and  then  so  pave  &  pitch  the  same  before  their  doores 
with  stones,  soe  far  as  every  inhabitant's  house  shall  be  fronting  to- 
wards the  Graft  or  Ditch,  upon  pain  of  every  person  soe  neglecting 
shall  have  such  fines  inflicted  upon  them  as  the  Courte  sliall  thinke 
fitt. — Dated  this  9th  day  of  May,  1676,  then  proclaymed." 

Although  the  houses  were  ordered  to  be  built  fronting  the  "  Graft 
Ditch,"  at  that  time,  yet  the  line  of  the  Here  Graft  {Broad)  Street 
was  not  laid  out  until  about  twelve  years  after ;  this  is  shown  in  the 
appointment  of  two  carpenters,  as  surveyors,  to  lay  out  some  lots 
along  the  shore  of  the  East  River,  from  about  the  present  Moore 
Street,  along  the  east  line  of  Pearl  Street,  up  to  Coenties  Slip.  The 
proceedings  May  4,  1688,  show  the  appointment  of  "Peter  King  & 
Adolph  Pieterson,  surveyors  for  y*  Citty  of  New  York,"  were  re- 
quired to  "survey  y*  vacant  land  within  this  Citty,  near  and  in  y^ 
Dock,  beginning  ffrom  y*  Weigh-house  to  y*  Citty  Hall,  and  to  lay  y* 
same  out  in  lotts  of  eighty  foot  long,  into  the  Dock,  and  about  Four 
and  Twenty  ffoot  broad,  leaving  sufficient  spaces  ffor  y*  street;  as 
also  to  lay  out  y*  street,  ranging  with  y*  Here  Graft,  as  you  shall 


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WBST   INDIA   COMPANY^S   STORE.  33 

receive  farther  directions," — "and  that  they  lay  out  a  convenient 
inlett  in  y*  middle  of  y*  said  street  fiFor  y*  Water  to  flBow  in  at,  and 
y*  channell  of  y*  Here  Graft  to  run  into  it."  Again,  on  the  14tk  of 
June  following,  it  was  "Ordered,  that  the  Carpenters,  Mr.  Adolph 
Pieterson  and  Peter  King,  forthwith  sett  up  the  fframes  of  the  inlett 
into  the  Here  Graft  of  sixteen  ffoot  wide,  leaving  on  each  side  twen- 
ty^ght  ffoot  for  the  (Broad)  Street." 

In  consequence  of  the  war  between  the  Fatherland  and  England, 
the  citizens  began  to  fear  that  the  feeling  had  extended  to  the 
Englbh  Colonies;  and  if  a  sadden  attack  should  be  made  on  the 
cit}%  it  would  be  found  defenceless. 

Orders  were  therefore  given,  on  the  13th  of  March,  1653,  to  re- 
pair the  "Fort;"  that  the  whole  body  of  citizens  should  mount 
guard  every  night;  and  to  "inclose  the  greater  part  of  the  city 
with  upright  palisades  and  small  breastworks,  so  that,  in  case  of 
necessity,  all  the  inhabitants  may  retire  within  the  inclosure." 
This  wall  of  palisades  was  made  of  hard  wood,  of  twelve  to  thir- 
teen feet  in  height  by  eighteen  inches  in  circumference,  and  sharp- 
ened at  the  tops;  they  extended  from  the  East  to  the  North  River, 
along  the  northerly  side  of  the  street,  which  took  and  yet  retains 
its  name  from  this  tcaU,  or  barrier,  of  palisades.  There  were  but 
two  entrances  on  the  land  side,  by  which  the  city  could  be  entered : 
one  on  the  present  Broadway,  and  the  other  on  Pearl  Street. 

After  the  "wall"  was  finished,  the  "Nigh^Watch"  became  care- 
less, and  neglected  to  mount  guard  every  night,  as  directed :  so, 
on  the  24th  of  November  following,  Governor  Stuyvesant  sum- 
moned the  Captains  of  the  Burgery,  (citizens J  Arent  Van  Hatten 
and  Martin  Krigier,  before  him,  and  told  them  he  "was  highly  dis- 
pleased that  the  Burgers  should  have  intermitted  their  night-watch 
without  his  knowledge;  whereupon  they  answered,  that  this  hap- 
pened through  the  want  of /rc-Mworf/"  to  which  "Stuyvesant" 
said,  "  that  they  set  to  and  procure  some."  Van  Hatten  pleaded 
the  resolution  previously  made,  "refused  to  do  so,  and  requested  his 
High  Mightiness  that  tiiey  should  go,  according  to  request,  to  the 
Burgomasters  and  Schepens." 

An  attempt  was  made,  in  the  month  of  November,  next  year,  to 
"ordain  and  establish  a  *  Battle  Watch*  of  four  to  six  men,  to 
guard  this  city  by  night;  wherefore  all  persons,  who  desire  to  un- 
dertake the  same,  are  warned  to  repair  to  the  aforesaid  place, 
(City  HaUJ  to  hear  the  conditions,  and  to  act  according  to  circum- 
stances." The  Court  met  at  the  appointed  place  and  hour,  and 
after  stating  the  "  conditions,"  there  was  not  one  offered  himself  to 
undertake  this  important  trust;  so  the  idea  of  forming  a  "Rattle 
Vol.  I.— 3 


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34  WEST   INDIA   COMPANY^S   STOKE. 

Watch"  at  that  period  was  given  np,  although  they  sacceeded  a 
few  years  afterwards  to  organize  one.  The  Burgomasters,  on 
the  4th  of  March,  1658,  say  they  "  have  above  eight  persons  for  24 
stivers  every  night  they  watch,  it  being  well  understood  four  and 
four  shall  watch  each  night ;  and  they  are  promised  one  or  two 
beavers  for  candles,  and  two  to  three  hundred  pieces  of  fire-wood." 

On  the  12th  inst.  following,  Lodowyck  Pos  was  appointed  Cap- 
tain of  the  "  Battle  Watch,"  when  Articles  or  Rules  were  estab- 
lished. 

The  trading  at  the  "  Strand,"  already  referred  to,  no  doubt  in- 
creased from  year  to  year,  as  the  agriculturist  advanced;  and  the 
Town  of  Manhattan,  in  February,  1653,  formally  became  a  city* — 
the  City  of  New  Amsterdam. 

Although  there  were  large  crops  raised,  yet  they  were  not  such 
as  furnished  food  for  the  increased  immigration.  The  growing 
of  tobacco  was  found  more  profitable  than  the  growing  of  grain, 
and  the  agriculturist  excessively  cultivated  it.  "  For  the  last  two 
years,  a  scarcity  of  food  now  became  imminent."  "  To  prevent  this, 
the  export  of  breadstuffs  was  prohibited;  tobacco-planters  were 
ordered  to  set  as  many  hills  of  com  as  they  did  of  tobacco,  and  the 
consumption  of  grain  by  brewers  and  distillers  was  strictly  for- 
bidden."t 

About  two  years  after  this  scarcity  of  food,  the  inhabitants  were 
again  visited  with  another  more  terrible  infliction.  ''Sixty-four 
canoes  landed  at  the  city,  with  nearly  two  thousand  Indians,  who 
broke  into  several  of  the  houses,  on  pretence  of  looking  for  oUier 
Indians.  The  magistrates,  however,  succeeded  in  prevailing  upon 
them  to  quit  the  place  by  sundown,  and  to  retire  to  '  Nut  (Govern- 
or's) Island.' "  In  the  evening  they  again  appeared,  and  attacked 
some  of  the  citizens;  but  they,  in  return,  had  prepared  for  them, 
and  after  killing  several,  drove  them  out  of  the  city.  The  Indians 
then  proceeded  to  lay  the  country  around  in  waste.  In  three  days, 
one  hundred  of  the  Dutch  were  killed,  one  hundred  and  fifty  taken 
prisoners,  twenty-eight  ''boweries"  and  a  number  of  plantations 
were  burned,  twelve  or  fifteen  thousand  schepels  of  grain  destroyed, 
from  five  to  six  hundred  head  of  cattle  killed  or  driven  off,  and  the 
farmers  driven  into  the  city  for  refuge. 

Governor  Stuyvesant  being  an  old  soldier,  and  withal  a  diploma- 
tist, brought  his  threatening  or  persuasive  powers  into  action  on 
the  Indians,  and,  with  some  presents,  soon  restored  peace.  Many 
of  these  Indians  were  ofttimes  found  treacherous,  and  were  not 
generally  liked  by  many  of  the  settlers,  who  would  occasionally 
*  Brodhead.  f  O'Callaghao. 


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MARKET-PLACE   AT    THE   STRAND.  35 

bring  charges  against  them,  which  very  often  were  proved  false ; 
and  this  had  no  doubt  a  tendency  to  establish  the  following  regula- 
tion in  "the  month  of  January,  1656."*  "Various  complaints 
were  made,  *  that  under  the  notion  and  name  of  Indians,  horned 
cattle,  hogs,  and  other  animals  on  the  plains  have  been  seized, 
slaughtered,  and  offered  for  sale  by  Christians,  or  at  least  by  those 
who  go  under  the  name  of  Christians.  To  prevent,  from  this 
time  forth,  neither  in  this  city,  nor  on  the  plains  belonging  to  this 
province,  shall  any  cattle,  hogs,  goats,  or  sheep  be  permitted  to  bo 
slaughtered,  not  even  by  the  owner  himself,  unless  the  owner  first, 
on  the  same  days  he  intends  to  slaughter,  shall  have  given  in  such 
creature  as  his  own,  to  the  magistrate  of  the  respective  place  to 
which  he  belongs,  and  from  him  have  obtained  a  slaughter  certifi- 
cate* " — ^for  which  he  had  to  pay  a  fee,  according  to  the  size  and 
value  of  the  animal. 

The  city  and  citizens  no  doubt  severely  felt  these  drawbacks,  but, 
under  Governor  Stuyvesant's  vigorous  administration,  both  kept  on 
increasing.  "A  survey  of  the  city  at  this  period  showed  there 
were  *  one  hundred  and  twenty  houses,'  with  extensive  lots,  and 
•  one  thousand  souls.'  "t  The  houses  were  more  substantially  built, 
the  streets  were  better  regulated,  and  a  more  rigid  system  was  in- 
troduced into  all  the  local  affairs  of  Government. 


"MARKET-PLACE  AT  THE  STRAND." 

1656.  The  increasing  number  of  the  inhabitants  in  the  year  1656 
no  doubt  wished  better  regulations,  especially  in  the  one  specified  as 
their  "market-day."  Monday  was  objectionable,  because  the  butch- 
ers had  to  slaughter  their  animals,  and  the  farmers  to  gather  their 
productions  on  the  Sabbath-day;  and  as  no  particular  public  market- 
place had  yet  been  appointed  by  the  authorities  here,  although,  as 
has  been  before  noticed,  the  inhabitants,  in  the  course  of  trade,  had 
first  made  the  open  ground  before  the  "Company's  Store"  and  the 
fort  a  "market-field;"  then,  likely,  the  scarcity  of  food  in  1653  and 
'54  had  caused  the  citizens,  in  their  pressing  wants,  to  meet  the  mar- 
ket-boats and  canoes  as  they  ran  upon  the  shore  or  strand,  which 
extended  fipom  "Whitehall"  along  Dock  (vow  Pearl)  Street,  up  to 
the  "Graft"  f  Canal)  at  the  foot  of  Broad  Street." 

The  continuation  and  increase  of  business  at  that  place,  and  the 

*  City  Records.  |  Brodhead. 


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36         MARKET-PLACE  AT  THE  STRAND. 

fact  of  Governor  Stuyvesant  having  been  a  strictly  religious  char- 
acter— not  only  not  countenancing,  but  positively  forbidding  labor 
on  the  Sabbath-day — had  afforded  good  reasons,  with  the  assistance 
of  his  counselors,  to  change  the  "market-day,"  and  on  the  12th  day 
of  September,  1656,  formally,  to  appoint  a  public  locality  in  the  fol- 
lowing language :  ^*Ghreeting:  Whereas,  now  and  then  the  people 
from  without  are  in  the  habit  of  bringing  into  the  city  different  com- 
modities, such  as  veal,  pork,  butter,  cheese,  turnips,  roots,  straw,  and 
other  products  of  the  land,  for  the  purpose  of  selling  them ;  and  it 
frequently  happens,  particularly  here  at  the  *  Strand,'  that  they  are 
obliged  to  tarry  long,  and  to  lodge  to  their  great  damage,  for  the  rea- 
son, because  the  community,  or  at  least  the  greater  part,  especially  of 
those  who  live  away  from  the  *  Strand,'  are  not  aware  that  such 
commodities  have  been  brought  for  sale,  not  alone  to  the  discom- 
moding of  the  *Burgerers,'  but  also  to  the  notorious  injury  of  the 
enterprising  man  from  without,  who  frequently  has  to  lose  more 
in  his  time  than  the  profit  on  his  commodities  will  warrant; 
therefore,  for  the  purpose  of  making  provision  in  the  prem- 
ises, the  *  Director-General  and  the  Councillors'  aforesaid,  by  these 
presents,  do  ordain,  that  from  this  time  forth,  here  in  this  city.  Sat* 
urday  shall  be  the  market-day,  and  market  shall  be  held  at  the 
atrandt  at  or  around  the  house  of  Mr.  Hans  Kierstede,  where,  after 
him,  every  one  shall  be  permitted  to  enter  that  has  anything  to  buy 
or  sell."*  This  location  was  between  Moore  and  Whitehall  Streets, 
on  the  east  side  of  Pearl  Street. 

Here,  then,  the  public  wants  and  accommodations  of  both  produ- 
cer and  consumer  appear  to  have  been  consulted  by  the  public  authori- 
ties in  establishing  the  Jlrst  public  marArc^place  in  our  city,  without 
a  direct  gain  to  the  public  coffers,  although  one  part  of  the  public 
revenue  was  received  in  the  form  of  "excise"  on  all  the  slaughtered 
cattle,  which  all  had  to  pay  alike,  whether  for  sale  at  the  "  Compa- 
ny's Store"  or  for  family  purposes.  "They  who  slaughter  oxen, 
cows,  calves,  hogs,  or  goats,  for  consumption,  shall  be  taxed  for  each 
guilder  (40  cents)  of  their  value,  one  stuyver,  (2  cents;)  and  those 
who  do  not  produce  their  animals  for  valuation  previous  to  slaugh- 
tering, shall  forfeit  the  same,  for  the  benefit  of  the  ofiBcer,  the  town, 
and  the  informer."t 

This  "Excise "J  was  first /armed  or  leased,  for  one  year,  to  Sol- 
omon La  Chair,  Burgher,  for  the  sum  of  seven  hundred  and  ten  Ca- 
role guilders,  (about  $284.)  He  appeared  in  Court  on  the  6th  of 
November,  1656,  and  requested  that  "sworn  butchers"  may  be  or- 

^  City  Records.  t  City  Records  aod  Doc.  Hist  of  N.  T.,  toL  I,  p.  646. 

X  City  Records. 


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MARKET-PLACE  AT  THE  STRAND.         37 

dered  and  confirmed.  The  Burgomasters  and  Schepens  appointed 
"  William  Claseii^  Gerit  Jansen  Boos,  and  Jan  Van  Haerlan"  "who 
Bhall  each  be  bound  to  serve  in  butchering  and  cutting  up,  and,  to 
provide,  have,  and  possess  their  own  ropes,  hand-barrows,  troughs, 
and  other  articles  requisite  for  slaughtering,  and  receive  for  butcher- 
ing and  cutting  as  follows: 

"For  every  ox  or  cow,     ...    -    4  guilders,  or  $1.60  cefUs. 
"    every  pi?  under  80  lbs.  wt.,    20  stivers,     "      .40      " 
**    over  that  (weight,)    -    -    -     80  stivers,     "      .60     " 

"    a  calf, 1  guilder,    "      .40     " 

"    a  sheep  or  goat,    -    -    -    -    12  stivers,     "      .24  cents" 

Some  of  the  inhabitants,  in  giving  in  the  valuation  of  an  animal 
to  La  Chair,  were  apt  to  place  their  worth  at  too  low  a  figure,  as 
he  petitions  to  the  Court  "to  be  allowed  to  value  them  himself,  and 
to  bind  himself  to  take  the  animals  at  such  valuation,  if  the  owner 
is  satisfied."  This  the  Court  grants  him.  About  the  same  time,  a 
complaint  is  made  against  William  Harck,  for  slaughtering  cattle 
without  paying  excise.  He  states,  in  answer,  "that  he  killed 
four  cattle  for  Mr.  Thos.  Willet,  o'er  at  the  Ferry,  (Brooklyn,) 
and  he  is  ignorant  if  he  must  pay  excise  for  them.''  The  Court  de- 
cides he  must  pay  "either  himself,  or  by  Mr.  Willet.' " 

The  next  year,  (1657,)  this  "Excise,"  as  a  ''Slaughter  Farmer," 
was  leased  to  Gerrit  Hendricks,  who  received  the  same  rate  of  fees 
on  "all  steers,  cows,  calves,  sheep,  lambs,  hogs,  bucks,  or  goats;" 
and  also,  "that  for  all  salted  meats  or  pork  coming  from  without 
into  this  city,  whether  in  barrels  or  casks,  to  be  consumed,  shall  be 
paid  to  the  farmer  aforesaid  one  stuy ver  in  each  guilder  of  the 
yalue  of  the  same." 

"That  all  fresh  or  salted  meat  coming  into  this  place  and  not  to 
be  consumed  here,  but  for  exportation,  the  person  who  brings  the 
same  in  shall  be  obligated  to  procure  from  thQ  farmer  a  certificate 
of  deliyery,  containing  an  account  of  the  just  quantity  or  weight 
of  the  meat;  and  moreover,  to  procure  from  the  said /armer  a  cer- 
tificate of  inspection,  and  shall  also  pay  therefor  three  stuyvcrs." 
Hendricks,  no  doubt,  was  the  first  "  inspector  of  salted  meats"  here. 

In  the  month  of  July,  the  year  following,  (1658,)  **the  Heer  Pres- 
ident" states,  "that  the  Burgomasters  have  resolved  that  the  Board 
should  fix  certain  hours  of  the  day  when  the  working  people  should 
go  to  their  work  and  come  from  their  work,  as  well  also  their  re- 
cess for  meals." 

Near  this  "market-place  at  the  strand,"  in  the  "market-field,"  a 
cattle-market,  or  the  first  "Bull's  Head,"  was  established  on  the  13th 
of  December  following,  and  the  Secretary  was  ordered  to  draw  up  a 


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38         MABKBT-PLACB  AT  THE  STRAND. 

"placard,"  holding  a  cattle-market  for  about  forty  days  in  the  fall  of 
the  year,  "for  the  sale  oifat  and  lean  cattle."  This  placard  says: 
"The  Schout,  Burgomasters,  and  Schepens  make  known  that  they 
establish,  for  the  accommodation  of  the  public,  a  market  for  store  and 
fat  catUe,  steers,  cows,  sheep,  goats,  hogs,  bucks,  and  such  like,  and  to 
that  end,  they  mean  to  erect  stalls  and  other  conyeniences  for  those 
who  bring  such  animals  to  market.  This  market  will  be  opened  the 
20th  day  of  October,  and  close  the  last  day  of  Norember,  precise- 
ly, in  each  year;  during  such  time  it  shall  remain  a  free  cattle- 
market,  and  no  stranger  shall,  during  that  time,  be  liable  to  arrest 
or  citation,  but  shall  be  permitted  to  attend  to  his  business  without 
molestation  or  hinderance."  It  also  orders  the  Burghers  not  to  meet 
any  one  for  the  purpose  of  buying  cattle,  except  only  at  the  place  ap- 
pointed; that  "posts  shall  be  erected  by  the  side  of  the  Church, 
(along  the  toest  side  of  the  'market-Jidd/  against  the  fort  J  where  those 
who  bring  fat  cattle  to  market  for  sale  shall  present  them." 

At  another  meeting  held  March  7,  1659,  "it  was  thought  good," 
(as  aU  the  proceedings  at  that  time  were  kept  in  Dutch  J  "  that  the 
proclamation  concerning  the  cattle-market  be  translated  into  English, 
and  sent  to  the  magistrates  of  the  following  places:  Stamford,  Paii^ 
field,  Southampton,  Southhold,  Stratford,  Milford,  and  East  Hamp- 
ton, and  to  be  accompanied  with  the  following  letter: 

"Worthy  Lords — The  object  of  this  is  to  make  known  to  you  our 
resolution  to  erect  and  establish  within  this  city  a  market  for  fat 
and  lean  cattle,  and  to  request  of  you  to  make  known  the  same  to 
your  people ;  and  that  every  one  has  leave  to  come  to  said  market 
with  his  cattle  who  may  be  inclined  to  extend  his  voyage  hither- 
ward."    "We  remain,  4c." 

The  English  and  Dutch  traders  were  sometimes  sorely  troubled 
in  their  trading  transactions,  on  account  of  their  difierent  languages, 
and  there  were  but  few  who  could  translate  well  enough  to  allow 
them  to  drive  a  satisfactory  bargain.  Three  years  previous  to 
this  "  proclamation,"  Jan.  Peeck  had  been  occasionally  employed, 
and  found  very  useful,  so  the  Court,  on  the  25th  February,  (1656,) 
appointed  him  as  a  translator,  or  "  broker,"  between  the  Dutch  and 
English  merchants,  who  paid  him  a  per  centage  on  the  amount  of 
their  trade  or  sale. 

These  Cattle  Pairs  first  introduced  the  New  England  (English) 
breed  of  cattle  into  our  city,  which  were  soon  after  preferred  by 
many  to  the  Dutch  breed.  The  New  Englanders  appeared  to  un- 
derstand their  breeding,  rearing,  and  feeding  much  better  than  the 
Dutch  settlers,  and  their  fine  animals  were  more  eagerly  sought  after, 
which  soon  caused  a  regular  trade  to  be  opened  at  all  seasons  of  the 
year. 


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MARKET-PLACE   AT    THE  STRAND.  39 

In  1667  the  trade  from  New  England  had  become  so  flourishing 
as  to  demand  the  establishment  of  a  ferry  across  the  Harlaem  River, 
which,  as  the  Records  show,  on  the  9th  of  July,  was  in  the  posses- 
sion of  Johannes  Yerveshe,  of  Barlaem,  to  whom  the  authorities 
*'  have  soiled  the  fferry  as  foUoweth :  Itt  is  agreed  hee  shall  have  the 
fferry  for  ffive  years,  provided  hee  keepe  a  convenient  house  and 
lodging,  for  passengers  att  Harlam,  and  he  shall  have  a  small  pecce 
of  land  on  Bronckside,  about  an  acre,  and  a  place  to  build  a  house 
on,  which  he  must  cleare,  and  not  spoyle  the  meadow,  which  shall 
bee  layed  out  by  the  Town,  which  must  bee  a  morgan  of  land,  and 
att  the  end  of  ffive  years  itt  is  to  be  farmed  out,  and  dureing  the 
five  yeares  hee  shall  pay  nothing  for  itt ;  and  in  case  itt  shall  be  lett 
to  another,  the  house  shall  be  vallued  as  itt  stands,  and  he  must  be 
payed  for  itt,  provided  hee  may  have  the  preffernence  of  the  hyring 
of  itt  att  the  tyme  expired. 

'*  Heere  foUoweth  what  he  shall  aske  ffor  every  man  passenger,  or 
horse  or  cattle. 

"  Ffor  every  passenger,  two-pence  silver,  or  sixpence  wampum. 

"  Ffor  every  ox  or  cow  that  shall  bee  brought  into  his  fferry-boat, 
eight-pence,  or  twenty-foure  stivers ;  and  cattle  under  a  year  ould, 
sixpence,  or  eighteen  stivers  wampum.  All  cattle  that  are  swome 
(stcimsj  over,  pay  but  half  price.  Hee  is  to  take  for  dyett  every 
man  for  his  meale,  eight-pence,  or  twenty-foure  stivers  wampum. 
Every  man  for  his  lodging,  two-pence  a  man,  or  six  stivers  in  wam- 
pum. Every  man  for  his  horse  shall  pay  foure-pcnce  for  his  night's 
hay  or  grass,  or  twelve  stivers  wampum,  provided  the  grass  be  in 
fence. 

"All  men  going  or  coming  with  a  packett  from  our  Governor  of 
New  Yorke,  or  coming  from  the  Governor  of  Connectcott,  shall  be 
fferried  free. 

"Also,  in  regard  the  said  Yerveshe  must  be  att  the  charge  of 
building  a  house  on  each  side  of  the  fferry,  the  Governor  hath  freed 
him  from  paying  any  excise  for  what  wine  or  beare  hee  shall  retayle 
in  his  house  for  one  yeare  after  the  date  hereof." 

In  the  year  1668,  Yerveshe  (or  Verveden,  as  he  is  now  knotvnj 
"  and  the  remaining  inhabitants  of  New  Harlaem,"  complains  of  cer- 
tain travelers  using  a  place  to  cross  near  Spitenduyvdy  and  have 
broken  down  fences  with  their  cattle  and  horses.  The  Court  and 
Governor  order,  "  that  among  others,  also,  one  John  Barcker  has 
passed  with  a  great  number  of  cattle  and  horses  over  the  Spyten- 
duyvel."  They  order,  "  that  said  Barcker  shall  pay  the  ferry-money 
of  all  horses  and  caltle  conveyed  by  him  over  the  Spytenduyvel, 
whilst  the  ferry  has  been  at  Harlaem,  which  ferry-money  the  peti- 


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40         MARKET-PLACE  AT  THE  STRAND. 

tioner  shall  employ  for  the  repairs  of  the  fences  on  Spytendujrvel 
aforesaid ;  and  the  ferryman  is  in  like  manner  well  and  expressly 
ordered  and  charged  to  finish  the  house  and  korael,  (peUfJ  according 
to  his  agreement,  at  the  earliest  opportunity." 

On  the  shore  or  "  strand"  near  this  market-place,  the  sale  of  fish, 
oysters,  &c.,  it  may  reasonably  be  supposed,  took  place  from  the 
boats,  skiffs,  and  canoes,  or  they  had  about  this  time  been  removed 
to  the  "  canal,"  which  was  reported  at  a  meeting  held  7th  March, 
1660,  that,  "  Good  care  and  superintendence  on  the  newly  construct- 
ed graft,  (canal J  that  no  filth  be  cast  into  it;  also  that  the  boats, 
canoes,  and  skiffs  be  placed  in  regular  order  therein."  A  complaint 
was  made  in  the  month  of  September,  against  Wessels  Everzen,  for 
"having  sold  fish  on  last  Sunday  forenoon."  Everzen's  wife  ap- 
pearing, says,  "  that  it  happened  before,  the  ringing  of  the  bell." 
Another  fisherman,  by  the  name  of  Albert  Trumpeter,  was  also  com- 
plained of  for  the  same  thing ;  his  wife  also  said,  "  it  occurred  be- 
fore the  ringing  of  the  bell." 

The  Court,  after  some  consideration,  dismissed  them,  by  saying 
that  it  "  took  place  before  the  preaching." 

Forestalling  also  appeared  to  have  been  quite  extensively  prao* 
ticed,  through  a  trade  with  the  Indians,  who  visited  the  city  with 
their  various  articles  for  that  purpose.  The  Burgomasters  and 
Schepens  had  repeatedly  warned  those  who  engaged  in  it,  but  it  ap- 
pears it  had  not  produced  the  desired  effect ;  so,  at  a  meeting  on  the 
11th  of  October,  1661,  the  authorities  say,  "they  had  spoken  about 
the  forestalling  of  what  the  Indians  bring  to  sell,  such  as  venison, 
maize,  and  fish ;"  whereupon  it  was  declared,  "  that  no  Indian  shall 
bring  any  articles  to  any  place,  except  such  as  shall  be  ordered  and 
appointed  therefor." 

Then,  on  the  26th  of  June,  1663,  "  Otte  Gerrits  complains  of  Joris 
Dopzen  and  Roelef  Jansen  Van  Mepplen,  for  having  *  brought  in 
two  quarters  of  veal  without  a  permit.'  Gerrits  demands  the  veal, 
and  a  double  fine."  Both  of  the  defendants  admit  "  it  to  be  so," 
and,  it  is  reasonable  to  suppose,  were  fined  accordingly. 

Another  curious  case  is  noticed  on  the  13th  of  November,  in  the 
same  year,  when  a  woman  named  Aa^ht  Joes  sues  Cornelius  Jansen 
Van  Horn.  She  states  her  case  before  the  Court,  and  says,  "  Her 
boy  shot  a  bear,  which  he  tried  to  put  into  his  boat,  and  that  the 
defendant  came  by  there,  who  said  that  he  had  chased  the  bear,  and 
that  the  half  belonged  to  him ;  forcing  him  to  toss  up  for  who 
should  have  the  skin,  which  her  boy  lost:  maintaining  that  the  de- 
fendant has  no  right  to  the  skin,  but  her  hoy,  because  he  had 
shot  it." 


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MARKET-PLACE  AT  THC  STRAND.         41 

Defendant  says,  "He  chased  the  bear,  and  that  he  was  on  one  end 
of  the  Island,  and  the  boy  shot  the  bear  on  the  other  end:  admits 
he  told  the  boy  to  toss  up  for  the  skin,  and  that  he  had  eaten  half  of 
the  meat."  Burgomaster  and  Schepens  having  heard  the  parties, 
decree  that  "the  bear  belongs  to  the  boy,  as  he  shot  him;  but  since 
half  of  the  meat  has  been  consumed  by  the  defendant,  and  the 
plaintiff  is  content  with  the  skin,  that  defendant  shall  deliver  up  to 
her  (3Irs.  Joes)  the  skin  of  the  aforesaid  bear." 

These  trial  scenes  certainly  appear  very  curious  and  laughable  to 
the  present  generation ;  while  there  is  no  doubt  the  scenes  of  the 
present  day  will  be  looked  upon  by  future  generations  with  the 
same  feelings.  These  "Old  Netherlanders,"  who  laid  the  founda- 
tion of  our  great  city,  brought  many  of  their  "old  fatherland" 
habits,  customs,  and  laws;  but  the  currency,  or  principal  part  of  it, 
as  noticed  before,  had  been  already  established  by  the  Indians,  and 
to  deal  or  trade  with  them,  it  was  necessary  for  the  Burghers  to 
adopt  it ;  although  a  great  deal  of  trad^g  was  done,  principally 
among  the  settlers  themselves,  by  barter. 

One  of  the  earliest  cases  of  trading  and  worthy  of  notice 
appears  from  the  Translations  of  Van  der  Kemp,  dated  10th  of 
October,  1638 :  "  Cornelius  Petersen  appeared  before  the  Secretary 
Van  Tienhoven,  and  declared  with  true  Christian  affirmation,  in 
lieu  of  a  solemn  oath,  that  it  was  true  that  he  had  purchased  a  hog 
from  Ann  Jackson,  in  payment  of  which,  she  took  from  his  store 
so  much  of  purpled  cloath  as  was  sufficient  for  a  petticoat." 
There  appears  no  evidence  given  as  to  the  size  of  the  hog  or  the 
garment;  we  may  therefore  rationally  conclude  that,  if  the 
garmeivt  was  as  expansive  or  expensive  as  those  worn  two  hun- 
dred and  tv>eiity  years  after  I  why,  the  hog  ought  to  have  been  of  an 
enormous  size  1 

The  trading  price  of  pork  and  beef  at  this  period  (1664)  is  shown 
in  the  following  extract  from  the  "  Register  of  the  Resolutions,"* 
dated  May  31,  1664:  "Agreed  with  Captain  Tomas  WiKet  that  he 
will  procure  for  us,  on  account  of  the  Honorable  Company,  if  he 
can,  a  quantity  of  pork  and  beef  equal  to  600  lbs.,  the  beef  at  4, 
and  the  pork  at  5  stivers  the  pound,  payable  in  negroes,  at  such 
price  as  may  be  agreed  on ;  in  case  of  not  agreeing,  in  beaver  or 
goods — ^beaver  price." 

In  the  city  the  prices  usually  ranged  higher,  especially  at  retail, 

and  they  also  were  r^ulated  by  the  currency  paid  for  them:  if  the 

pay  was  in  ''good  Iiard  money, ^'  it  was  at  a  less  price  than  "pay  as 

money f^'  or  '' trust J^    ''Pay  as  rnoney^^  meant,  pay  in  provisions  of 

*  Hoi.  Doc.,  vol.  ii.,  p.  47i. 


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42         MARKET-PLACE  AT  THE  STRAND. 

any  kind,  at  one-third  less  than  GoYernment  valuation ;  and  ^HtnsV^ 
was  still  worse»  as  one-fourth  or  one-fifth  more  was  charged  than 
the  article  could  have  been  bought  for  with  "jfoorf  hard  money" 

"  Goyernment  valuation/'  after  the  change  of  government  from 
Dutch  to  English,  appears  to  have  been  the  standard  price  for  all 
kinds  of  stock  or  produce,  which  was  fixed  by  the  *'  Governor  and 
Court  of  Assize;"  and  all  such,  at  this  fixed  rate,  paid  debts,  taxes, 
rates,  &c.,  especially  out  of  the  city,  where  there  was  but  little 
business  done  except  by  trading  or  paying  in  this  manner. 

We  find  the  Assessors  were  ordered  by  law,  in  1665,*  to  value 

stock  at  the  following  prices : 

"A  horse  or  mare,  4  years  old  and  upwards,    -        -    £12  0  0 

An  ox  or  bull,  "        "  "  -  6  0  0 

A  cow,  "        "  "  -        -         6  0  0 

A  steer  or  heifer,  between  three  and  four  years  old,      4  0  0 

A  goat,  one  year  old, 0  8  0 

A  sheep,     "  "  i 0  6  8 

A  swine,     "  " 10  0" 

"  The  prices  of  many  articles  of  food  varied  but  little  from  1665  to 
1687,  and  were  also  received  for  taxes,  and  contracted  for  in  trade, 
at  the  following  prices : 
"  Pork,         j£3, 10«.,  Orf .  per  barrel,  or  8rf.  per  lb. 
Beef,  1, 10«.,  Orf.        "  2d.      " 

Wheat,         0,    4«.,  Orf.  per  bushel,  to  5«. 
Rye,  0,    a?.,  6d.  "  3«.,  6rf. 

Indian  corn,  2».,  6c?.  do.    Oats,  2«.  do.    Butter,  6rf.  per  lb. 
Tallow  and  hog's  fat,  6d.  do.    Dry  hides,  4d.  per  lb. 
Green  hides,  2rf.  do.    Board,  5«.  per  week. 

Victuals,        6c?.  per  meal.        Lodging,  2d.  per  night. 
Labor,  2^.,  6c?.  per  day.  Beer,  2d.  per  mug." 

"The  practice  of  paying  in  produce  continued  until  about  the 
year  1700,  when  trade  had  rendered  money  plenty,  and  introduced 
it  into  general  circulation." 

In  the  year  1670,  some  interesting  particulars  of  the  city,  its  in- 
habitants, and  of  the  country  around,  have  been  given  by  Denton, 
who  says,  "  New  York  is  built  most  of  brick  and  stone,  and  cover- 
ed with  red  and  black  tile ;  and  the  land  being  high,  it  gives  at  a 
distance  a  pleasing  aspect  to  the  spectator." 

"  The  inhabitants  consist  most  of  English  and  Dutch,  and  have 
a  considerable  trade  with  the  Indians,  for  beavers,  otter,  racoon 
skins,  with  other  furs;  and  also  for  bear,  deer,  and  elk  skins;  and 

*  Wood,  L.  L,  p.  16  and  17. 


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MARKET-PLACE  AT  THE  STRAND.         43 

are  supplied  with  venison  and  fowl  in  the  winter,  and  fish  in  the 
summer,  by  the  Indians,  which  they  buy  at  an  easie  rate." 

He  says  of  the  country  around,  and  more  especially  of  Long 
Island,  that  ''  it  is  inhabited  from  one  end  to  the*  other — ^is  plenti- 
fully stored  with  all  sorts  of  English  cattel,  horses,  hogs,  sheep, 
goats,  &c. ;  no  place  in  the  North  of  America  better." 

''  To  give  some  satisfaction  to  people  that  shall  be  desirous  to 
transport  themselves  thither — {this  country.)  The  best  commodi- 
ties for  any  to  carry  with  them  is  clothing.  They  sowe  store  of 
flax,  which  they  make  every  one  cloth  of  for  their  own  wearing,  as 
also  woollen  cloth,  and  linsey-woolsey,  and,  had  they  more  tradeeh 
men  amongst  them,  they  would  in  a  little  time  live  without  the  help 
of  any  other  countrey  for  their  clothing." 

"  Here  you  need  not  trouble  the  shambles  for  meat,  nor  bakers 
and  brewers  for  beer  and  bread,  nor  run  to  a  linnen-draper  for  a 
supply,  every  one  making  their  own  linnen,  and  a  great  part  of  their 
woollen  cloth,  for  their  ordinary  wearing." 

**  Were  it  not  to  avoid  prolixity,  I  would  say  a  great  deal  more, 
and  yet  say  too  little,  how  free  are  those  parts  of  the  world  from 
that  pride  and  oppression,  with  their  miserable  efiects,  which  many, 
nay  almost  all  parts  of  the  world,  are  troubled,  with  being  ignorant 
of  that  pomp  and  knavery  which  aspiring  humours  are  servants  to, 
and  striving  after  almost  everywhere ;  where  a  waggon  or  cart  gives 
as  good  content  as  a  coach,  and  a  piece  of  home-made  cloth,  better 
than  the  finest  lawns  or  richest  silks ;  and  though  their  low-roofed 
houses  may  seem  to  shut  their  doors  against  pride  and  luxury,  yet 
how  do  they  stand  wide  open  to  let  charity  in  and  out,  either  to  as- 
sist each  other,  or  relieve  a  stranger."* 

In  the  year  1671  numerous  complaints  were  made,  "  that  great 
quantities  of  unmarked  horses  and  cattle,  contrary  to  the  former 
ordinance,  still  are  found  in  the  common  wood-land  of  the  Island  of 
the  Manhattan.  It  is  therefore  ordered  by  the  mayor,  that  the  per- 
sons heretofore  appointed  (of  whom  there  were  four)  for  branders, 
as  well  as  at  Haerlam,  shall  give  notice  that  no  horses  or  cattle, 
after  the  space  of  six  weeks  next  ensuing,  are  permitted  to  feed  in 
the  common  lands  of  this  Island,  except  they  are  branded  with  the 
eiiiye's  or  tawne^s  brand  upon.  Those  found  not  branded  *  shall  be 
brought  up  to  the  S.  Overseers  to  be  branded,  and  the  owner  of  the 
same  shall  pay  as  followeth :  for  bringing  up  a  horse,  six  guilders, 
and  for  branding,  two  guilders ;  for  bringing  up  a  steare,  oxe,  or 
cow,  three  guilders,  and  for  branding,  one  guilder.    If  no  owner 

•  DenUm'B  **  New  York,"  pobliBhed  by  WmiAm  Gowaii. 


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44  BROADWAY   SHAMBLES. 

appears  for  those  which  are  not  known,  they  shall  be  kept  during 
the  space  of  six  weeks,  and  then  publicly  sould.' "  * 

This  "Market-Place  at  the  Strand"  continued  as  such  until  the 
year  1675,  when  ihe  "  Custom-House  Bridge  Market-House  "  was 
erected,  and  its  attractive  "fitt"  shelter  drew  the  market  people 
from  what,  during  a  period  of  almost  twenty  years,  had  been  known 
as  "  at  the  Strand,  at  or  around  the  house  of  Mr.  Hans  Kierstede." 


•'BROADWAY   SHAMBLES." 

Earlt  in  the  year  1658,  a  meat-market  was  established,  and  a 
shed  or  shambles  were  built  for  that  purpose,  on  the  plain  in  front 
of  the  "Fort  Amsterdam,"  the  present  site  of  the  Bowling  Green. 
This  appears  to  have  been  the  first  place  erected  expressly  for  the 
sale  of  the  meat  of  large  animals,  as,  previous  to  this,  we  have  before 
noticed  that  ''fresh  beef  and  pork  had  been  sold,  and  no  doubt  cut 
up,  at  the  Company's  Store."  Smaller  animals,  such  as  mutton,  veal, 
goats'  flesh,  &c.,  had  been  sold  from  the  baskets  of  the  producers,  at 
the  "Market-Place  at  the  Strand." 

The  market-place  having  been  established,  an  elderly  Burgher,  or 
,  rather  "Claas  Van  Elsant,  the  elder,"  on  the  21st  of  February  fol- 
lowing, petitions,  "that  the  magistrates  may  be  pleased  to  allow  him 
to  be  keeper  of  the  shambles,  as  it  is  frequently  demanded,  both  by 
the  English  and  outside  people,  that  some  one  may  be  appointed  to 
fix  a  block,  scales,  and  weights  in  the  hall,  so  that  they  may  not  be 
at  a  loss  when  they  come  there  with  their  meats."t  His  request  was 
laid  over  until  another  meeting,  when  it  was  denied.  The  next  year 
he  again  presents  himself  at  the  Court,  and  "requests  to  be  Clerk 
of  the  Market;"  soon  after.  Tennis  Kray  (who  held  the  public  oflSce 
of  a  measurer  of  apples,  onions,  and  turnips,)  petitions  "  that  his  wife 
may  superintend  the  market,  to  keep  it  clean."  The  Court  answers, 
"that  nothing  will  be  done  about  the  market  for  the  present  time." 

This  market  "shambles  on  the  plain"  did  not  appear  to  answer 
the  purpose  of  its  erecters,  as  there  is  no  doubt  that  it  was  a  small, 
rough  shed ;  open,  leaky,  and  not  suitable  for  stormy  or  cold  weather. 
As  the  Records  show,  on  the  following  18th  of  April,  "the  Burgo- 
masters resolved  and  concluded  to  erect  the  TTica^-market;  further, 
to  cover  it  with  tiles;   to  have  a  block  brought  therein,  and  to 

«  City  Beootda.  t  lUd. 

I 


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BROADWAY   SHAMBLES.  45 

leave  the  key  with  Andries  (de  Haas)  the  baker,  who  shall  pro- 
visionally have  charge  thereof." 

We  have  previously  introduced  three  sworn  butchers,  whose  chief 
business  was  in  "butchering  and  cutting  up,"  for  the  private  citi- 
zens and  the  "  Company's  Store ;"  but  now  having  established  this 
meo^-market,  and  many  complaints  being  made  of  frauds  which  had 
been  committed  by  cheating  the  Oovemment  out  of  their  lawful  ex- 
cise, called  for  additional  "  sworn  butchers."  These  facts  brought 
the  Burgomasters  and  Schepens  together  on  the  24th  of  September, 
1660,  when  they  resolved  to  appoint  more  "  sworn  butchers,"  who 
are  to  be  bound  under  certain  instructions.  At  a  meeting  held  on 
the  15th  October  following,  therefore,  a  placard  was  prepared  in 
the  following  terms :  "  In  accordance  with  the  laudable  custom  of 
our  own  Fatherland,  and  for  the  accommodation  of  the  Burghers 
and  inhabitants  of  this  city,  (tvej  have  thought  it  expedient  that 
sworn  butchers  be  accepted  and  chosen,  who  shall  be  empowered  to 
slaughter  all  cattle  consumed  within  this  city's  jurisdiction — they 
have  therefore  accepted  and  selected  thereunto 

Egbert  Meinderzen,  Asser  Levy,  (a  Jew  J 

Roelof  Jansen,  Yceter  Maacker, 

Gerrit  Jansen  Roos,  Jan  Van  Harlaem, 

Pieter  Jansen,  Yande  Langstraat, 

Hendrick  Volkersen,  Daniel  Tourneur, 

Paulus  Van  de  Beeck,  Gerrit  Fullewever, 

who  are  made  known  to  the  community,  that  every  one  who  has  any  * 
cattle  to  be  slaughtered  may  speak  to  them,  and  pay  them  the  fol- 
lowing fees: 
One  ox  or  cow,  ....    5  guilders,  (ahout  $2  ]) 

"    hog, 1  thaler; 

"    sheep,  calf,  or  goat,     -        -        -    1  guilder,  ^40  cents;) 
small  animals  in  proportion."    In  their  instructions,  "  they  shall  be 
bound  to  accommodate  every  one  without  delay,  and  bring  with 
them  their  tools;  and  shall  not  kill  any  cattle  without  a  permit 
from  the  Slaughter  Farmer." 

They  all  submitted  to  the  instructions,  and  were  sworn,  except 
Asser  Levy,  who  "  requests  to  be  excused  from  killing  hogs,  as  his 
religion  does  not  allow  him  to  doit;  which  was  granted  him." 
He  then  took  the  oath  which  the  Jews  are  accustomed  to  take. 

The  municipal  oflScers  occasionally  engaged  in  a  little  of  the 
slaughtering  business,  and  no  doubt  received  some  extra  privileges 
from  the  "  Slaughter  Farmer,"  when  preparing  meats  for  the  Com- 
pany's Store;  or  it  appears  so  from  the  proceedings  which  took 
place  on  the  19th  October  following.    ''  The  Heer  Schepen,  Cor- 


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46  BROADWAY   SHAMBLES. 

nelis  Steenwyck,  proposes,  as  the  season  for  slaQghtering  is  at 
hand,  and  he  is  about  to  kill  some  cattle,  therefore  requests  that  he 
may  pay  the  Farmer  for  what  he  consumes,  as  well  as  for  the  meat 
which  he  may  deliver  to  the  Burghers,  and  for  what  he  should  send 
or  deliver  to  the  (Company^ a)  Store,  that  he  might  convey  with  a 
permit,  merely  paying  an  excise." 

Burgomasters  and  Schepens  having  considered  the  request,  decide 
that  the  Heer  Cornelis  Steenwyck  shall  have  to  pay  the  farmer  for 
what  he  consumes  and  sells  to  the  Burghers  of  this  city ;  and  he 
shall  procure  merely  a  permit  for  what  he  sends  or  delivers  to  the 
*'  Company." 

These  "sworn  butchers"  were  very  partial  to  litigation  in  set- 
tling their  difficulties,  which  appears  usually  to  have  been  done 
through  referees,  and  without  the  assistance  of  the  legal  profession* 
Some  of  these  trials  are  quite  original  in  their  way,  and,  in  their 
details,  show  how  much  of  the  business  was  conducted,  as  well  as  the 
history  of  the  citizens  of  that  early  day.  The  Jew,  Asser  Levy,  is 
found  often  engaged,  both  before  and  after  he  was  made  a  "sworn 
butcher,"  in  suits  of  various  kinds.  The  first  he  brings  against 
Egbert  Meinderzen,  in  relation  to  the  division  of  profits. 

This  case  was  before  the  Court  January  18,  1661,  when  Levy 
states,  "he  bought  and  slaughtered  some  cattle  with  defendant,  and 
receiving  the  balance  from  defendant  after  settlement  of  account, 
he  said  he  should  count  it  (money)  after  him,  and  acquaintinf?  him 
thereof,  that  defendant  abused  him,  as  one  who  supported  thieves 
and  such  like ;  for  which  he  demands  reparation.  Defendant  denies 
it.  Plaintiff  says  he  can  prove  it,  which  the  W.  Court  ordered  him 
to  do  by  the  next  court-day." 

On  the  following  8d  of  May,  Levy  is  engaged  in  another  against 
Frans.  Janzen  Van  Hooghten,  a  carpenter,  who  "hath  agreed  to 
build  a  house  for  Wessels,  {Evertzen)  the  fisherman,  which  must  be 
finished  by  May,  and  to  this  time  {M  May)  the  agreement  is  without 
efiect ;  and  whereas  he  has  hired  the  same  house  from  the  above- 
named  Wessels,  and  cannot  occupy  it,  he  claims  the  damage  he  shall 
suffer  thereby,  as  he  must  remain  so  long  in  another  man's  house. 

"  Defendant  says  he  undertook  the  house,  but  for  no  time,  and 
must  moreover  wait  for  the  materials  to  make  the  roof  tight ;  he 
has  spoken  to  Wessels  Evertaen  about  them,  who  gave  him  for 
answer,  he  could  not  bring  them  so  soon. 

"  Plaintiff  says  he  laid  the  roof  on  long  ago,  and  that  defendant 
went  to  other  work,  leaving  that  stand."  The  Court  orders  the 
**  defendant  to  go  to  the  work,  and  remain  there  until  it  be  finished, 
without  working  on  another." 


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BROADWAY   SHAMBLES.  47 

Again,  a  few  years  after,  (November  21,  1665,)  this  Levy 
brought  a  suit  against  Johanos  La  Montayne,  about  some  goats, 
which  were  at  that  time  extensively  used  for  the  dairy  and  slaughter. 
In  La  Montayne's  answer,  he  says,  the  "  eight  goats  were  not  re- 
fused to  be  paid,  on  condition  that  Levy  restored  to  him  the  butter, 
etc.,  the  produce  of  the  seven  goats  which  he  sold  Mr.  Gysbert, 
before  the  expiration  of  the  contract  on  which  he  had  the  goats." 

The  evidence  which  follows  shows  that  an  attempt  had  been 
made  to  have  it  settled  by  arbitration.  This  says:  "On  date,  27th 
October,  appeared  before  me,  Nicolaes  Bayard,  the  above-mentioned 
plaintiff,  Aroer  Levy,  who  declared  that  he  agreed  with  the  defend- 
ant, Johan  Montayne,  that  defendant  should  pay  him  for  his  claim 
8  goats,  2  wethers,  150  ps.  fire-wood,  and  2  cocks,  provided  the 
plaintiff  paid  the  costs  of  this  suit." 

Another  of  these  ''  sworn  butchers,"  named  Daniel  Toumeur, 
must  have  been  also  fond  of  the  ''  law,"  but  otherwise  he  appears 
unlike  Levy,  as  he  slaughtered  and  dealt  in  hogs.  He  brings  a 
suit  against  Frans.  Jansen  Van  Hooghten,  on  the  10th  February, 
1660,  from  whom  he  demands  one  beaver,  balance  of  a  hog,  and 
two  guilders  for  slaughtering.  Defendant  says  that,  on  buying 
the  hog,  he  was  told  by  the  plaintiff  that  he  had  no  measled  hogs 
among  his ;  and  on  slaughtering  it,  found  it  measled.  Defendant 
is  asked  if  he  killed  the  hog  shortly  after  buying  it?    Answers,  ^ 

No ;  but  three  or  four  weeks  after.  The  W.  Court  order  defend- 
ant to  pay  the  plaintiff  the  beaver,  and  the  two  guilders  for  kill- 
ing. This  case  having  been  decided,  Toumeur  and  Jans  Schryver, 
on  the  same  day,  were  called  upon  as  witnesses  in  another  hog  case. 
They  were  "  asked  about  the  sale  of  the  hog  which  took  place 
between  Captain  Jan  Jacobzen  and  the  Rector  Alexander  Garo- 
Ins  Curtius.  Daniel  Tourneur  declares  that,  after  many  words  of 
praising  and  bidding,  the  hog  was  sold  to  Dom  Rector  for  five 
beavers,  saying  that  Captain  Jacob  would  not  sell  that  hog  less 
than  five  beavers,  which  was  told  to  the  Rector;  to  which  the 
Rector  answered,  saying,  in  Ood's  name,  he  had  but  two  beavers, 
and  he  must  wait  for  the  other  three ;  to  which  Captain  Jacob  would 
hardly  agree.  Finally,  through  the  mediation  of  Joannes  Van  der 
Mezlen,  he  let  himself  be  persuaded ;  offering  to  confirm  the  same 
on  oath. 

Jan  Schryver  declares  that  Dom*  Rector  bought  the  hog  for 
two  blankets  and  ttco  leavers ;  offering  also  to  confirm  the  same  on 
oath. 

The  W.  Court  give  parties  eight  days'  respite  to  recollect  them- 
selves, and  if  they  have  any  proof,  to  bring  it  also  in." 


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48  BROADWAY   SHAMBLES. 

This  case  was  decided  on  the  24th  of  August  following,  by  the 
Court,  "who  condemned  the  defendant  to  pay  the  plaintiff  five 
beavers,  which  he  proved." 

Next  we  notice  Daniel  Toumeur  in  the  position  of  a  defendant  in 
a  suit  brought  before  the  Court,  on  the  18th  of  September,  1664,  by 
Albert  Trumpeter,  who  complains  '*  that  he  missed  a  hog,  being  a 
sow,  which  he  had  placed  on  Baren  Island  with  other  hogs,  which 
the  defendant  removed  from  there.  Defendant  admits  having  taken 
a  hog  from  the  Island ;  saying  that  some  of  the  N.  Haerlem  have 
hogs  also  running  there,  and  that  one  requested  the  other,  when 
going  to  the  Island,  to  look  after  his  hogs;  and  as  he  was  there  to 
cut  grass,  returning  from  work,  he  saw  a  hog  lying  on  the  strand 
very  sick,  which  he  laid  loose  in  his  canoe  and  brought  to  the  vil- 
lage, making  the  same  known,  in  order  to  learn  whose  hog  it  was; 
whereof  he  produces  declaration ;  then,  as  no  one  claimed  the  hog, 
he  wiU  let  it  lay  over  the  night,  to  see  if  some  one  would  not  come 
in  the  mean  while  to  whom  tiie  hog  belonged,  but  he  found  it  dead 
on  the  next  day.  The  W.  Court  having  heard  parties,  decree  that 
the  defendant  shall  replace  such  hog  on  Baren  Island  for  the  plaint- 
iff from  which  he  removed  plaintiff's  hog,  or  that  he  make  good  the 
removed  hog  to  the  plaintiff." 

Two  of  these  sworn  butchers  were  afterwards  engaged  against 
each  other  on  the  18th  January,  1661,  when  Roelef  Janzen  Van 
Mepplin  complains  of  Egbert  Meinderzen,  (who  appears  to  have 
been  rather  a  troublesome  Burgher.)  Van  Mepplin  **  says  he  hath 
slaughtered  some  cattle  in  company  with  the  defendant,  and  agreed 
with  him  for  wages,  at  26  stivers  per  head.  Demanding  a  balance 
of  sixty-one  guilders,  nine  stivers,  according  to  account  exhibited  in 
Court. 

Defendant  acknowledged  he  hath  entered  into  such  an  agree* 
ment  with  the  plaintiff,  and  that  no  money  has  yet  been  received ; 
that  plaintiff  is  unwilling  to  pay  the  expense  of  the  men.  He  was 
to  have  slaughtered  three  with  them,  and  did  slaughter  five  with 
them. 

Plaintiff  is  asked  if  he  helped  to  slaughter  the  cattle  which 
he  brings  into  account?  Answer — they  slaughtered  them  to- 
gether. 

Defendant  says  he  can  prove  by  Pieter  Jansen  and  Willem  Jan- 
sen  Van  Borckeloo  that  plaintiff  said  he  would  help  to  bear  the  ex- 
pense. Which  being  stated  to  plaintiff,  he  says,  if  defendant  can 
prove  that,  he  will  bear  the  expense  alone."  The  Court  order 
"  defendant  to  pay  the  plaintiff,  and  decree  that  the  defendant  shall 
bear  three^uarters  and  the  plaintiff  oneniuarter  of  the  expense," 


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BROADWAY   SHAMBLES.  49 

Another  novel  suit  was  brought  against  one  of  the  early  sworn 
butchers,  at  a  Court  held  on  the  3d  of  August,  1673,  where  "Thomas 
Walton  brings  action  against  Roelef  Jansen,  butcher,  for  sheep  sold 
him."  He  claims  "  the  quantity  of  three  ankers  of  rum."  The 
Court  condemns  "Jansen  to  pay  the  said  debt."  Then  again,  in 
1674,  Jansen  was  sued  by  David  de  Four,  who  demands  from  Jan- 
sen "  the  sum  of  ff.200,  for  an  ox  sold  about  two  years  ago  to  the 
defendant,  and  offers  to  deliver  to  defendant  a  certain  cow  which 
he  bartered  with  defendant  whenever  he  is  paid."  Jansen  says,  "  that 
De  Four  did  not  deliver  him  the  cow  according  to  agreement,  notr 
withstanding  he  sent  his  children  for  her  divers  times."  The  Court 
ordered,  "  that  Jansen  shall  pay  De  Four  the  demanded  sum  within 
eight  days'  time,  provided  the  cow  be  first  delivered  to  the  plaint- 
iff the  time  the  same  is  paid,  and  that  said  cow  shall  meanwhile  run 
at  defendant's  risk." 

We  turn  back,  and  find,  three  days  after  these  butchers  were 
Bworn  in,  (October  15, 1660,)  Egbert  Meinderzen,  who  had  a  com- 
plaint lodged  against  him  "  by  persons  bringing  meat  to  market, 
that  he  obliges  them  to  purchase  a  Burgher-right  first  before  they 
can  sell  it."  The  Court  warns  him  not  to  do  so  any  more,  or  he 
will  be  attended  to. 

This  Burgher-right,  or  freedom  of  the  city,  appears  to  have  been 
of  two  kinds,  which  vested  certain  rights  and  privileges  in  the 
holder  when  obtained,  and  were  known  as  the  "Great  Burgher- 
right"  and  *'  Small  Burgher-right." 

The  **  Great  Burgher-right"  was  established  in  this  city  on  the 
30th  of  January,  1657,  as  will  appear  from  the  "Records,"  in  tli3 
following  language:  "The  Court  allow  and  concede  to  the  Burgo- 
masters and  Schepens  the  establishment  of  a  Great  Burgher-right, 
for  which  those  who  may  request  to  be  therein,  shall  pay  fifty 
guilders,  ($20 ;)  and  all  such,  and  such  only,  shall  hereafter  be  qual- 
ified to  fill  all  city  offices  and  dignities  within  this  city — ^be  exempt 
for  one  year  and  six  weeks  from  watches  and  expeditions — ^be  free 
in  their  proper  persons  from  arrest  by  any  subaltern  Court  or  judi- 
cial benches  of  this  province."  The  "  Small  Burgher-right"  it  was 
necessary  to  obtain  before  they  could  do  any  business,  and  some 
bought  it  only  for  short  periods;  however,  the  following  proceed- 
ings will  more  fully  explain  this  privilege. 

On  the  25th  of  March  following,  "  The  Heer  President  states  that 
there  are  several  of  the  inhabitants  of  this  city  who  have  purchased 
their  *  Burgher-right'  for  a  year  and  a  day,  and  do  not  pay ;  and 
whenever  the  city  messenger  goes  for  payment,  they  answer,  they 
have  no  money,  proceeding  to  scoff  at  and  censure  the  Burgomasters ; 
Vol.  I.— 4 


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50  BROADWAY    SHAMBLES. 

and  thongh  it  be  a  matter  which  concerns  the  Borgomasters  alone, 
uevertheless,  that  it  be  known  to  the  Heer  Schepens,  it  is  therefore 
communicated  to  the  Court  to  remember  it." 

Two  days  after,  '*  the  Schonts  and  Burgomasters,  pursuant  to  the 
privilege  granted  on  date  30th  January,  1657,  that  some  of  the  new- 
ly-arriving passengers  may,  through  ignorance,  presume  to  sell  here 
in  this  city  by  the  ell,  measure,  or  weight,  or  pursue  some  other 
business,  have  thought  proper,  in  order  to  save  every  one  damage, 
again  to  inform  them  by  this  publication,  that  no  one  can  sell  in  the 
city  by  the  ell,  measure,  or  weight,  or  do  any  other  business,  unless 
he  have  received  the  Burgher^right  of  this  city,  and  have  his  ell, 
measure,  or  weight  stamped;  and  whoever  is  inclined  so  do  to  shall 
have  to  apply  to  receive  their  Burgher-right  to  the  Hon.  Presiding 
Burgomaster,  Allard  Anthony;  and  for  the  stamping  their  ell,  meas- 
ure, and  weights,  shall  apply  at  the  City  Hall,  on  the  afternoon  of 
Saturday,'  from  two  to  four  o'clock;  every  one  is  warned  to  take 
heed  of  damage."  The  same  day  ''Marcus  Yogelsangh  appears  in 
Court,  requesting  to  be  admitted  a  Burgher;  claiming,  as  he  lived 
here  before  three  years,  that  it  cannot  be  refused  him ;  and  also  that 
he  is  to  be  preferred  to  the  new-comers,  who  were  not  here  in  the 
troubles  with  the  English.  But  as  there  was  no  Burgher^right  at 
that  time,  Bui^omasters  decree  that  he,  the  petitioner,  must  purchase 
it  like  others,  or  he  cannot  be  considered  a  Burgher." 

On  the  9th  of  April  following,  notice  was  given  "that  those  who 
claim  the  Great  or  Small  Burgher-right,  by  virtue  of  gift  or  favor, 
shall  communicate  their  names  within  eight  days  to  the  Burgomas- 
ter of  this  city,  who,  for  this  purpose,  beginning  to-morrow,  the 
10th  inst.,  shall  sit  during  the  eight  days  at  the  City  Hall,  from  two 
o'clock  till  five  o'clock  in  the  afternoon,  to  inscribe  the  names,  with 
warning,  that  those  who  do  not  communicate  theirs  within  the  as- 
sessed time,  shall  be  deprived  of  the  claims  of  Burgher-right." 

Two  days  after,  "  Asser  Levy,  the  Jew  butcher,  appeared  in  Court; 
requests  to  be  admitted  a  Burgher ;  claims  such  ought  not  to  be  re- 
fused him,  as  he  keeps  watch  and  serves  like  other  Burghers,  show- 
ing Burgher's  certificate  from  the  City  of  Amsterdam,  that  the  Jew 
is  Burgher  there ;  which  being  debated  on,  'tis  decreed  as  before,  that 
it  cannot  be  allowed,  and  he  shall  apply  to  the  Director-General  and 
Council." 

"Lourens  Cornelius  Van  der  Wei"  also  appears  in  Court  the 
same  day,  "representing  that  he  hath  already  performed  divers  ex- 
traordinary services  in  time  of  need,  Ac,  both  as  a  gunner  of  the 
city,  as  also  in  the  South  (Ddatoare)  River,  and  that,  if  necessary, 
he  is  ready  to  serve;  requesting,  therefore,  the  benefit  of  a  Great 


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BROADWAY    SHAMBLES.  51 

Burgher-right.  Burgomasters,  considering  the  manifold  services  of 
the  {iCtitioner,  and  his  good  disposition  to  continue,  if  necessary, 
grant  his  petition,  and  he  is  therefore  inscribed,  and  has  taken  the 
Burgher  oath." 

The  next  year,  on  the  28th  February,  (1658,)  "Tomas  Swartwout 
appears  in  Court,  requesting  the  Small  Burgher-right,  and  took  the 
oath  in  Court,  signing  an  obligation  for  20  gl.  beavers,  payable  for 
it."  On  the  22d  of  the  following  month,  "It  was  ordered,  that  from 
now,  henceforward,  that  all  who  will  purchase  the  Great  and  Small 
Burgher-right,  shall  promptly  pay  into  the  Treasury ;  and  those  who 
have  already  bought  it,  to  pay  within  the  space  of  twenty-four  hours, 
on  pain  of  execution." 

Two  years  after,  on  the  arrival  of  the  ship  OUded  Beaver^  the 
Court  permanently  fixed  the  price  of  these  Rights,  which  took  place 
on  the  18th  of  June,  1660,  when  they  say,  "To  those  who  come  in 
the  ship  OUded  Beaver,  and  those  who  may  yet  come,"  must  pay 
"for  the  Small  Burgher-right  twenty  guilders,  ($8,)  and  for  the  *  Great 
Burgher-right'  fifty  guilders,  ($20;)  or  in  beavers,  the  beaver  to  be 
the  value  of  six  guilders." 

Referring  again  to  the  sworn  butchers,  we  find  a  man  by  the  name 
of  Symon  Joosten  is  noticed  in  Court,  October  16th  of  this  year, 
;1660,)  "aud  was  told  if  he  be  desirous  to  be  a  sworn  butcher,  he 
must  first  purchase  his  Burgher-right.  He  declares  he  is  not  desir- 
ous to  be  a  sworn  butcher,  but  requesting  that  he  may  sell  his  meat 
that  he  may  bring  for  sale  on  payment  of  the  excise,  which  is  al- 
lowed him." 

Meinderzcn  (before  noticed)  was  again  complained  of  on  the  next 
Court-day,  held  29th  October,  1660,  but  this  time  impleaded  with 
one  William  Jansen  Van  Borckeloo,  (an  unstvorn  butcher,)  and  from 
the  evidence  on  trial,  both  are  found  'guilty.  Meinderzen  is  fined 
twenty-five  guilders,  with  costs,  and  forbidden  to  slaughter  for  the 
!»pace/)f  six  weeks.  Van  Borckeloo  was  also  fined,  although  plead- 
ing ignorance  of  the  'placard,  in  the  sum  of  twenty-five  guilders  and 
costs.  The  next  day  Meinderzen  petitions  to  the  Court,  "after  pay- 
ing his  fine,  and  requests  their  Hon"  will  be  pleased  to  permit 
and  allow  him  to  slaughter  along  with  the  other  *  sworn  butchers.' 
The  Burgomasters,  through  special  considerations,  release  the  peti- 
tioner from  his  condemned  six  weeks,  with  this  reservation — that  he 
demeans  himself  for  the  future  as  an  honorable  Burgher."  Van 
Borckeloo  also  petitions  that  "he  has  settled  his  fine,  and  requests, 
in  all  humility,  that  your  Hon"  may  be  pleased  to  accept  him 
as  a  sworn  butcher."    His  request  was  also  granted. 

Oases  of  ihefl:  were  most  severely  punished,  and  sometimes  torture 


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52  BROADWAY   SHAMBLES. 

with  the  rack  and  chains  were  applied  to  force  confession  from  the 
culprit.  The  following  extracts  from  the  trials  of  two  individuals 
show  these  facts:  The  first  is  noticed  in  the  month  of  May,  1661,  in 
the  trial  of  one  Marten  Van  Weert.  when  under  examination  by  the 
magistrates.  "The  prisoner,  under  threats  of  being  placed  on  the 
rack^  was  asked  where  he  got  the  silver-handled  knife.  Answers, 
persisting  in  his  {former)  confession,  that  he  was  half  drunk  when 
he  took  the  spoons,  and  laid  them  the  next  morning  under  the  little 
shelf."  After  the  conclusion  of  the  trial,  the  magistrates  proceed 
to  show  his  many  unlawful  acts,  and  then  the  sentence  follows:  "For 
his  grave  and  shameful  act  of  theft,  committed  at  various  times  and 
divers  places,  according  to  his  own  voluntary  confession  and  ac- 
knowledgment, without  torture  or  force — ^first  having  stolen,  seven 
or  more  years  ago,  a  quantity  of  zeawan  from  the  house  of  Pieter 
Kock,  deceased ;  having  stolen  from  the  Heer  Cornelius  Steenwyck's 
house,  at  divers  times,  a  quantity  of  otters  and  beavers,  (skiTis,)  to- 
gether with  some  pieces  of  manufactured  or  Harlaem  stuflfs,  and  a 
piece  of  fine-napped  cloth;  also  a  piece  of  fine  linen;  having  lately 
stolen  from  Christyne  Capoens'  house,  at  the  feast  or  celebration  of 
the  marriapre  of  Lawurens  Van  der  Spygel  and  Sarah  Webbers,  to 
which  wedding  he  was  invited,  half-a-dozen  spoons,"  the  magistrates 
"condemn  the  above-named  Marten  Van  Waart,  as  they  hereby  do, 
that  he  shall  be  severely  scourged  with  rods  in  a  closed  chamber, 
banished  ten  years  out  of  this  jurisdiction,  and  further  in  the  c6sts 
and  mises  of  justice." 

On  the  16th  of  November  following,  another  case  is  found  in 
"Mesaack  Martenzen,  brought  forward,  was,  at  the  request  of  the 
Heer  OflBcer,  for  further  interrogation,  examined  by  torture  as  to 
how  many  cabbages,  fowls,  turkies,  and  how  much  butter  he  hath 
stolen,  who  his  abettors  and  co-operators  have  been.  Answering,  he 
persists  by  his  reply,  as  per  interrogatories,  that  he  did  not  steal  any 
butter,  fowl,  turkies,  nor  had  any  abettors;  being  again  set  loose, 
the  Heer  Officer  produces  his  demand  against  the  delinquent,  con- 
cluding, that  for  his  committed  theft,  voluntarily  confessed,  without 
torture  or  chains,  he  shall  be  brought  to  the  usual  place  of  criminal 
justice,  well  fastened  to  a  stake,  and  severely  whipt,  and  banished 
from  the  jurisdiction  of  this  City  of  Amsterdam,  for  the  term  of  ten 
years,  all  with  costs." 

At  the  Court  this  day,  January  81, 1662,  "Pieter,  the  negro,  en- 
tering, requests  payment  for  executing  the  sentence  on  one  Mesaack 
Martenzen  and  Marten  Van  Weert;  is  promised  that  arrangements 
shall  be  made  that  he  have  that  for  Mesaack,  but  that  of  Marten 
Van  Waart  is  promised  him  by  the  Heer  Officer." 


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BROADWAY   SHAMBLES.  53 

Ten  years  after,  John  Clarke,  in  a  letter  dated  "ffrom  y*  Secre- 
tarje's  Office  in  Ffort  James,  the  28th  day  of  January  in  the  even- 
ing, 1672-3/'  furnishes  us  with  some  other  interesting  facts  of  the 
same  character.  He  says:.  *' Lastly,  for  our  own  city  news,  lett  this 
satisfy :  that  'tother  day  wee  had  like  to  have  lost  our  hangman, 
Ben  Johnson,  for  hee  being  taken  in  diverse  thefts  and  robberyes, 
convicted  &  found  guilty,  scap^  his  neck  through  want  of  another 
hangman  to  truss  him  up,  soe  that  all  the  punishment  hee  receiv'  for 
his  3  yeares  roguery  in  thieving  &  stealing,  (which  was  never  found 
oat  till  now,)  was  only  thirty-nine  stripes  at  the  whipping-post,  loss 
of  an  ear,  &  banishm^  Capt.  Manning  had  likewise  2  servants  that 
hee  employed  at  his  island,  {now  BlacktodVa)  taken  w^  him  in  ;their 
villany,  but  they  being  not  found  soe  guilty  as  hee,  came  off  with 
whipping  and  banishment  All  this  happened  about  a  ffortnight 
since,  but  'tis  2  months  since  they  were  apprehended.  Another  dis- 
aster about  12  dayes  since  befell  a  young  man  in  this  towne,  by  name 
one  Mr.  Wright,  a  one-eyed  man,  &,  a  muff-maker  by  trade,  who 
drinking  hard  upon  rum  one  evening,  w^  some  ffriends,  begann  a 
health  of  a  whole  halfe  pint  at  a  draught,  w"^  hee  had  noe  sooner 
done  but  downe  hee  fell  and  never  rose  more,  w*"^  prodigy  may  teach 
us  all  to  have  a  care  how  wee  drink,  in  imitation  of  that  good  old 
lesson,  Fodix  quern  faciunt^  Ac.  This  young  man's  untimely  {end) 
doth  somewhat  parallel  that  person  in  yo'  letter,  who  you  write  was 
killed  with  a  sley,  the  w^  in  like  manner  could  but  strike  a  great 
amazem^  into  all  that  heard  it,  by  w"^  wee  may  see  that  though  there 
is  but  one  way  of  coming  into  the  world,  yet  there  is  a  thousand 
wayes  of  goeing  out  of  it."* 

We  again  look  back  to  the  year  1664,  on  the  3d  day  of  Septem- 
ber, when  New  Amsterdam  became  New  York,  (after  James,  Duke 
of  York,)  by  its  seizure,  and  Governor  Stuyvesant  was  forced  to 
surrender  it  to  GoL  Richard  Nicolls,  who  appeared  in  the  harbor 
with  a  powerful  English  fleet,  causing  an  open  war  between  Eng- 
land and  Holland;  this  was  settled  soon  afterwards,  and  New  York 
was  ceded  to  the  English  by  a  treaty.  The  city,  at  this  period,  con- 
tained about  1,500  inhabitants. 

Colonel  NicoU  immediately  became  the  Governor,  but  the  Dutch 
laws,  with  the  name  of  Schout,  Burgomaster,  and  Schepens,  were 
not  repealed  until  the  following  June  12th,  (1665,)  when  Mayor, 
Aldermen,  and  Sheriff  were  introduced ;  and  soon  afterwards  they 
were  importuned  with  petitions  and  complaints  of  various  charac- 
ters: one  of  which  was,  that  the  city  was  defrauded  by  the  inatten- 
tion of  Timothy  Gabrie,  collector  of  the  excise  on  slaughtered 

*  HUtorical  Magazine,  vol  W.,  p.  61. 


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54  BROADWAY   SHAMBLES. 

cattle,  who  is  informed  by  the  Court  that  "  the  city  is  seriously  de- 
frauded in  the  entering  of  cattle  for  slaughter;  that  before  he 
grants  a  license,  he  must  inspect  the  cattle,  to  see  if  they  be  entered 
according  to  the  just  value."* 

The  butchers,  also,  on  the  31st  of  October  following,  petition  for 
increased  ''fees  and  wages;"  which,  after  some  deliberation,  the 
authorities  only  raised  **  one  guilder  on  each  beast,  whether  ox  or 
cow ;  and  from  all  other  small  cattle,  not  more  than  was  granted 
and  allowed  heretofore." 

Additional  "sworn  butchers"  were  considered  necessary,  and  the 
following  were  appointed :  Jan  Hendrickson  Van  Gunst,  Bichard 
NichoUs,  and  Richard  Dodomit,  who  were  sworn  with  the  following 
oath :  "  We  doe  swere,  in  the  presence  of  the  Almighty  God,  that 
we,  as  sworne  Butchers  of  this  Gitty,  shal  kill  noe  Cattle,  Hoggs, 
etz,  without  a  Ticket  of  consent  from  the  Collectors  of  the  Mayor 
and  Aldermen,  except  it  be  for  the  Right  Hon"'*  Governor,  Richard 
Nicolls.    So  help  us  God  Almighty." 

At  some  seasons  of  the  year  these  butchers  were  busily  employed 
in  slaughtering,  especially  in  the  fall  season  and  part  of  the  winter, 
but  the  spring  and  summer  months  found  them  seeking  otlicr  em* 
ployment,  which  sometimes  appeared  to  interfere  with  the  rights  of 
others,  or  was  so  thought  in  these  early  days;  and  no  doubt  called 
forth  from  the  authorities,  on  the  25th  of  August,  1676,  the  follow- 
ing order:  "That  noe  Butchers  bee  permitted  to  be  Curriers,  Shoe- 
makers, or  Tanners;  nor  shall  any  Tanner  be  either  Curriers, 
Shoemakers,  or  Butchers ;  itt  being  consonant  to  the  Laws  of  Eng> 
land,  &  practised  in  the  neighbour  Collony's  of  y*  Massachusetts 
and  Conecticott." 

Prior  to  the  1st  of  November,  1676,  cattle  were  slaughtered  in 
the  citty  (then  below  Wall  Street)  at  the  private  establishments  of 
the  butchers ;  and  no  doubt  they  were  not  as  careful  or  as  cleanly 
as  they  should  have  been,  or  at  least  the  following  proceedings, 
which  appear  on  the  previous  7th  of  June,  lead  us  to  think  so: 
"  Whereas,  there  is  found  sev'all  inconveniencys  by  the  Butchers 
keeping  theire  Slaughter-Howses  in  this  City,  as  well  as  the  annoy- 
ance thereof  to  y*  inhabitants  of  the  same.  Itt  is  ordered,  y*  (thai) 
for  y*  future  there  shall  not  bee  any  Slaughter-House  V4n  this 
City,  nor  any  Oxen,  Cows,  Hogs,  Sheepe,  or  Lambs  killed  w'4n 
y*  same  after  the  first  day  of  November  next  ensuing,  upon  paiue 
not  only  to  forfeit  all  and  every  such  meate  soe  killed  contrary  to 
this  order,  but  forfeit  to  y'  use  of  the  Citty  the  sum  of  £10  ster- 
linge." 

*  City  Reooidfl. 


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BBOADWAT   SHAMBLES.  55 

This  onJer  caused  them  to  be  so  scattered  about  the  suburbs,  that 
it  gave  the  "Farmer  of  the  Excise"  a  great  deal  of  trouble  to 
examine  the  different  animals  which  were  to  be  slaughtered  on  the 
same  day ;  and  no  doubt  this  called  for  the  establishment  of  a  large 
public  slaughter-house,  to  be  conducted  by  the  Government,  on  the 
16th  of  February  the  next  year,  in  the  following  language:  "It  is 
ordered  that,  for  the  necessary  and  publique  use,  a  Generall  or  Pub- 
lique  Slaughter^Howse  shall  be  built  for  the  use  of  the  Cytie  over 
the  Water,  without  the  Gate  at  the  SmitKa  Fly,  neare  the  HaJ/ 
Moone" — ^Battery. 

"  Without  the  Gate"  meant  just  outside  of  the  Gate  of  the  WdU 
of  the  City,  and  on  the  east  end  of  WaU  Street,  on  the  river-shore, 
stood  the  '^Hijlf  Moom"  Battery;  between  this  and  the  present  Pine 
on  Pearl  Street  this  "Publique  Slaughter-Howse"  was  built,  one 
year  afterwards.  The  proceedings  show  on  the  8th  of  January, 
1678,  that  "Ashur  Levy,  {Jew  Butcher)  then  makeing  his  addresse 
to  their  Court,  that  hee  might  be  admitted  to  build  the  Slaughter- 
House,"  {mentioned  in  the  above,)  "and  to  take  in  Garrett  Jansen 
Rose  to  be  partner  therein,  and  that  all  persons  should  have  libberty 
to  kill  &  hang  therein  meat,  there  paying. for  the  same  as  formerly 
in  other  places."  The  Court  granted  his  proposal,  and  on  the  10th 
of  February  following,  he  "  affirmed  that  hee  had  built"  it;  when 
the  Court  confirmed  the  same  upon  him  and  his  partner. 

This  building  was  used  for  public  slaughtering  until  the  12th 
of  March,  1696,  when  a  committee  was  ordered,  (after  the  repre- 
sentations made  by  the  inhabitants  of  Pearl  Street,  setting  forth 
the  great  apprehensions  they  have  of  being  injured  by  the  "  Gun- 
powder  lodged  in  the  warehouse  near  Whitehall,")  "doe  view 
whether  the  Slaughter-Howse /orwer?^  imployed  for  that  use  be  suf- 
ficient for  y*  lodging  the  same — which  if  itt  be,  that  they  order  the 
powder  be  removed  thither  accordingly  /'  and  the  Slaughtcr-House 
became  a  powder-house. 

Asser  Levy,  the  Jew  butcher,  while  keeping  this  "Publique 
Slaughter-Howse,"  also  kept  an  old-established  tavern  near  by  or 
just  within  the  "  Water  Gate,"  which  many  previous  years  was  kept 
by  the  widow  of  Daniel  Litpchoe,  from  whom  he  purchased  it.  Levy 
died  in  the  year  1682,  when  his  family  removed  to  Long  Island. 

Gerrit  Jansen  Roos  was  a  carpenter  by  trade,  but  he  became  a 
sworn  butcher,  and  in  1665  lived  and  owned  property  on  the  present 
Broadway,  above  Wall  Street ;  then,  thirteen  years  after,  he  is  found 
engaged  with  Levy  in  the  public  Slaughter-House. 

Glancing  back  to  the  change  of  government  from  the  Dutch  to 
English  rule,  with  the  second  Governor,  Colonel  Francis  Lovelace, 


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56  BROADWAY   SHAMBLES. 

who  succeeded  Nicholls  in  1668,  did  not  altogether  change  the 
language  of  the  "  Records,"  as  they  were  yet  kept  in  both  EngHsh 
and  Dutch.  This  change,  however,  did  not  last  long;  for  on  the 
29th  day  of  July,  1673,  a  Dutch  fleet  sailed  into  our  harbor,  and, 
with  some  manoeuvring,  again  took  possession  of  the  countryt 
changed  the  name  of  New  York  to  that  of  "  New  Orange,"  (in  com- 
pliment to  the  Prince  of  Orange,)  and  with  it  the  form  of  govern- 
ment to  its  former  character  of  Schout,  Burgomaster  and  Schepens, 
and  Captain  Anthony  Colve  as  the  Governor.  This  continued  only 
for  a  short  period,  as,  by  a  treaty  of  peace  made  on  the  9th  of  Feb- 
ruary, 1674,  between  England  and  Holland,  the  Dutch  restored  this 
country  to  the  rule  of  the  English,  when  Sir  Edmund  Andross  be- 
came Governor,  William  Dervall  Mayor,  and  our  city  was  once 
more  called  New  York. 

Many  propositions  were  soon  after  offered,  followed  with  orders 
and  proclamations  to  improve  the  local  affairs  of  the  government, 
some  to  undo  and  others  to  add  to  those  already  in  existence.  "Itt 
being  taken  into  consideracon  wether  itt  bee  not  proper  to  have 
English  weights  and  measures  too  bee  used  according  too  the  Law. 
It  is  ordered,  thatt  in  three  months  after  the  publicacon  thereof,  the 
same  shall  bee  put  in  practize  in  the  City,  Long  Island,  and  parts 
adjacent, 

"And  in  six  months  in  all  other  parts  throughout  the  government. 
And  thatt  whosoever  shall  after  that  time  presume  too  use  any  other 
weights  and  measures,  shall  forefeite  all  they  shall  soe  sell,  and  bee 
lyable  too  such  further  punishment  ffbr  contempt  as  the  case  shall 
require.  The  time  off  Proclamacons  prohibiting  the  exportacona 
off  come,  ande  also  that  off  fflouer,  &c.,  being  expired,  the  same  be- 
ing taken  intoo  consideracon,  and  the  present  scarcity.  Itt  is  or- 
dered that  the  prohibicon  ffbr  exporting  ofl^  come  or  flSoure  doo  still 
continue  inn  force  ffbr  the  termeoff  six  months  after  the  dayte  here- 
off."*     ("^  Dutch  pound  contains  eighteen  ounces  ")f 

Several  other  changes  were  made  at  the  General  Court  of  Assize, 
held  in  the  city,  beginning  on  the  6th  and  ending  on  the  13th  of  Octo- 
ber, 1675,  among  which,  "AFair  or  Market  is  ordered  to  be  held  three 
dayes  at  Breucklin,"  and  three  more  in  this  city,  which  is  fully  noticed 
in  the  following  proclamation  made  by  Governor  Andross  on  the  29th 
of  January,  1676:  "And  the  ord'^of  the  Court  of  Assize  for  a  Pfayre 
to  bee  also  observed,  to  witt:  at  Breucklin  for  cattell,  Ac,  graine, 
&c.,  produce  of  the  country,  the  first  Monday,  Tuesday,  and  Wed- 
nesday in  November,  and  in  the  Citty  at  the  market-house  and  plaine 
afore  the  forte,  the  Thursday,  Fryday,  and  Saturday  followinge,  and 
•  Wooley'8  Journal,  by  Gowan,  p.  35.  f  city  Recorda. 


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BROADWAY   SHAMBLES.  57 

that  every  person  or  persons  cominge  to  the  same  are  and  bee  free 
from  any  arrest  or  arrests,  for  debt  or  debts  in  their  persons  or 
goods,  cominge  to  or  returninge  from  the  said  Markett  of  Fayre  day 
or  dayes,  of  w^**  all  persons  are  to  take  notice,  and  conform  them- 
selves thereunto  accordingly. 

'*  This  ord'  to  be  and  remain  in  force  for  the  space  of  three  yeares 
from  the  twenty-fourth  of  March  next."* 

Governor  Andross,  in  1678,  in  some  answers  about  New  York, 
shows  us  some  facts  in  relation  to  the  buildings,  productions,  trade, 
wealth,  slaves,  <&c.  He  says,  ''Our  buildings,  most  wood,  some  late- 
ly (built  (f)  stone  and  brick,  good  country  houses  &  strong  of 
their  several!  kindes.  Our  produce  is  land  provisions  of  all  sorts, 
as  of  wheate  exported  yearly  about  60,000  bushells,  pease,  beefe, 
}K)rk,  &  some  refuse  fish,  tobacco,  beavers,  peltry  or  furrs  from  the 
Indians,  deale  &  oake  timber,  plankes,  pipe-staves,  lumber,  horses, 
A  pitch  &  tarr  lately  began  to  be  made.  Comodityes  imported  are 
all  sorts  of  English  manufacture  for  Christians,  &  blankets,  duffelis, 
Ac,  for  Indians  about  50,000  lbs.  {£)  yearly. 

''Our  merch^  are  not  many,  but  with  inhabitants  &  planters 
about  2,000  able  to  beare  arms ;  old  inhabitants  of  the  place  or  of 
England,  except  in  &  neere  New  Yorke,  of  Dutch  extraction,  & 
some  few  of  all  nations;  but  few  serv^,  much  wanted,  and  but  very 
few  slaves.  Some  few  slaves  are  sometimes  brought  from  Barbadoes, 
most  for  provisions,  and  sould  att  ab*  30  lb.  or  35  lb.  country  pay. 

"A  mercli*  worthe  1,000  lb.  or  500  lb.  is  accompted  a  good  sub- 
stantiall  merchant ;  and  a  planter  worthe  halfe  that  in  moveables, 
accompted  (rich?)  with  all  the  Estates,  may  be  valued  att  about 
£150,000."    "  Noe  beggars,  but  all  poore  cared  for." 

About  this  period  Mr.  Wooley,  in  his  "Journal,"  also  gives  some 
interesting  facts,  in  the  following  words:  he  says,  "The  price  of  In- 
dian commodities  as  sold  by  the  Christians  is  as  foUoweth  : 

£.    •.    d.  £.    R,    d. 

Beavers,  -  00  10  3  a  pound.  Grey  Foxes,  -  00  03  0  a  pound. 
The  Lapps,     00  07  6        "  Otters,    -    -    00  08  0 

Minks,   -    -    00  05  0        "  Rackoons,    -    00  01  5 

"  Beaver  is  fifteen  pence  a  skin  custom  at  New  York,  four-pence 
at  London;  three-pence  a  skin  freight,  which  is  after  the  rate  of 
fifteen  pounds  a  tun. 

"The  value  of  other  skins:  a  deer  skin,  00  00  6  a  p.;  a  good 
bear  skin  will  give  00  07  0;  a  black  beaver  skin  is  worth  a  beaver 
and  a  half  of  another  colour;  a  black  otter's  skin,  if  very  good,  is 
worth  twenty  shillings;  a  fisher's  skin,  three  shillings;  a  cat's  skin, 

•  City  RecordB. 


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58  BROADWAY   SHAMBLES. 

half  a  crown ;  a  wolf's  skin,  three  shillings ;  a  musquash,  or  a  musk- 
rat's  skin,  six  shillings  and  ten-pence. 

"An  oxe-hide,  three-pence  a  pound  wet,  and  sixpence  dry.  Mo- 
lossus,  three-pence  a  pound,  and  fifty  shillings  a  barrel  in  wii^ter, 
that  being  the  dearest  season.  Sugar  in  Barbadoes,  twelve  shillings 
the  hundred,  which  contains  a  hundred  and  twelve  pounds,  which  at 
New  York  yields  thirty  shillings  the  bare  hundred.  In  Barbadoes, 
(new  negroes,  t.  c,  such  as  cannot  speak  English,)  are  bought  for 
twelve  or  fourteen  pound  a  head ;  but  if  they  can  speak  English, 
sixteen  or  seventeen  pound;  and  at  New  York,  if  they  are  grown 
there,  they  give  thirty-five  and  thirty  or  forty  pound  a  head,  where, 
by-the-by,  let  me  observe,  that  the  Indians  look  upon  these  negroes 
or  blacks  as  an  anomalous  issue,  meer  Edomites,  hewers  of  wood 
and  drawers  of  water. 

**The  price  of  provisions:  Long  Island  wheat,  three  shillings  a 
(schepd)  skipple,  (being  three  parts  of  a  bushel;)  sopus  wheat,  half 
a  crown  a  skipple;  Indian  corn  flower,  fifteen  shillings  a  hundred; 
bread,  18  a  hundred ;  pork,  £3  the  barrel,  which  contains  two  hun- 
dred and  forty  pounds,  i.  €.,  3d.  the  pound;  beef,  30s.  the  barrel ; 
butter,  fid.  a  pound ;  amongst  provisions  I  may  reckon  tobacco,  of 
which  they  are  obstinate  and  incessant  smokers,  both  Indians  and 
Dutch,  especially  the  latter,  whose  diet,  especially  of  the  boorish 
sort,  being  sallets  and  bacon,  and  very  often  picked  buttermilk,  re- 
quire the  use  of  that  herb  to  keep  their  phlegm  from  coagulating 
and  curdling.  I  once  saw  a  pretty  instance  relating  to  the  power 
of  tobacco,  in  two  Dutchmen  riding  a  race  with  short  campaigne 
pipes  in  their  mouths,  one  of  which  being  hur  I'd  from  his  steed,  as  soon 
as  he  gathered  himself  up  again,  whip'd  to  his  pipe,  and  fell  a  suck- 
ing and  drawing,  regarding  neither  his  horse  nor  fall,  as  if  the  prize 
consisting  in  getting  that  heat  which  came  from  his  beloved  smoke.'* 

In  1680,  another  extraordinary  market-day  is  ordered  to  be  kept 
every  week,  on  Wednesday.  This,  however,  is  to  be  held  at  the 
market-place,  near  the  bridge  and  weigh-house. 

These  particular  days  were  no  doubt  designated  in  the  laws  and 
ordinances  for  the  purpose  of  enabling  the  country  people  to  meet 
on  certain  days,  to  establish  them  as  marketrdays,  "Wednesdays and 
Saturdays,"  at  the  market-place  "  near  the  bridge  and  weigh-house," 
(see  Custom-Houae  Bridge  Market;)  and  the  only  place  for  the  sale 
of  fresh  meat  was  at  the  Broadway  Shambles,  where  the  regular  mar- 
ket-days were  "upon  Tuesday,  Thursday,  and  Saturday,"  which  fact 
is  shown  from  the  laws  *' ordained  and  enacted  on  the  15th  day  of 
March,  1688."  They  read,  "  that  Tuesday,  Thursday,  and  Saturday 
in  each  week  be  and  are  hereby  appointed  market-days  in  this  city, 


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BROADWAY   SHAMBLES.  59 

for  the  exposing  to  sale  at  the  market-house  all  batchers'  meat  and 
flesh  whatsoever ;  that  is  to  say,  on  Tuesday  and  Thursday,  from  8 
to  12  of  the  clock  in  the  forenoon;  and  on  Saturday,  the  same  time 
of  the  forenoon,  and  from  two  to  four  of  the  clock  in  the  afternoon, 
for  the  market  shall  be  opened  and  shut  by  the  ringing  of  the  bell. 
No  butchers'-meat  victuals  is  to  be  exposed  for  sale  in  the  said  mar- 
ket, under  the  penalty  of  forfeitiffe."* 

Before  the  close  of  the  year,  it  appears  that  "  butchers'  meat  is 
to  be  sold  every  day,  except  Sunday,"  from  the  proceeding  held  on 
the  6th  of  December  same  year,  which  first  notices  the  fact  that 
"the  Ly censes  always  belong  to  y*  Govemo',  the  benefitt  of  y*  Mar- 
kett  and  Markett-Houses  is  granted,  provided  there  be  nothing  sold 
but  upon  Wednesday  and  Saturday,  beginning  betwixt  nine  &  ten 
of  y*  clock  in  y*  fforenoon,  and  all  brought  in  j*  market^place, 
nothing  being  sold  in  any  vessel!,  boate,  or  canoe  w^soever;  only 
Butchers^  meat  is  to  be  sold  every  day  in  y*  weeke,  Sunday  excepted, 
but  to  be  sold  in  y*  markett,  &  no  where  else.  That  it  is  conven- 
ient a  Gierke  of  j*  Markett  be  appointed,  and  that  by  j*  Governor, 
who  shall  see  after  y*  weights  &  measures,  &  due  regulations  of 
markett." 

The  *'Dongan  Charter,"  which  was  proclaimed  three  years  after, 
also  says,  that  "Tuesday,  Thursdajr,  and  Saturday"  were  the  regu- 
lar market-days;  this  is  dated  April  22d,  1686,  and  also  says: 
'^Whereas,  the  citizens  and  inhabitants  of  the  said  city  have 
erected,  built,  and  appropriated,  at  their  own  proper  costs  and 
charges,  several  public  buildings,  accommodations,  and  convenience 
for  the  said  city ;  that  is  to  say,  the  City  HaJl  or  Stadt  House,  with 
the  ground  thereunto  belonging,  ttoo  market-housesy  &c.,"  (one  the 
'^Broadway  ShamUes,^^  and  the  other  the  *' Custom-House  Bridge 
Market.")  It  further  says :  "  The  granting  to  the  Mayor,  Aiders 
men,  and  Cpmmonalty,  that  they  and  their  successors  shall,  and 
may  forever  hereafter,  hold  and  keep  within  the  said  city,  in  every 
week  of  the  year,  three  market-days;  the  one  upon  Tuesday,  the 
other  upon  Thursday,  and  the  other  upon  Saturday,  weekly,  for- 
ever." 

In  1691,  the  "Broadway  Shambles"  still  continued  to  be  the  only 
meat-market,  and  were  so  represented  on  the  first  day  of  April 
of  that  year,  in  the  proceedings,  which  say :  "  That  there  be  but 
one  batchers'  shambles  within  this  citty ;  that  it  be  still  daily  kept 
at  the  (Grreen^  or)  Groon,  before  the  ffort,  until  further;  and  all 
batchers'  meat  to  be  brought  to  the  said  shambles  for  sayle,  and  no 
other  place." 

•  City  RecorOfl. 


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60  BHOADWAY    SHAMBLES. 

This  was  followed  on  the  18tb  of  the  same  month  with  market 
regulations,  as  follows :  "  Resolved,  That  the  market  for  Jlesk  be 
kept  three  dayes  in  the  week — ^Tuesday,  Thursday,  and  Saturday — 
and  that  the  market  bee  opened  by  seven  of  the  clock  in  the  morn- 
ing, and  notice  to  bee  given  for  the  opening  of  the  same  by  the 
Ringing  of  the  Bell ;  and  in  case  by  Tydes,  weather,  or  any  other 
accident,  that  Flesh,  Pish,  Poultry,  Eggs,  Butter,  Cheese,  hearbes, 
ffruit,  and  Rootes,  or  other  provisions  vendible,  should  come  to  the 
Citty  on  other  days  wh'"  are  not  markete  days — ^yett  they  may  nev- 
ertheless be  sould  in  the  said  markett-place  under  the  same  Circum* 
stances  and  Regulations  as  on  the  Dayes  on  wh*"'  the  marketts  are 
appointed." 

*'  No  Hucksters  or  persons  to  sell  againe  shall  b(u)y  any  flesh, 
fish,  fowles,  Egges,  butter,  Cheese,  or  any  other  sort  of  provision 
sayable,  till  it  hath  bin  two  houres  in  the  markett,  upon  forfeiture 
of  six  shillings,  and  also  what  shall  bee  so  brought  or  sold." 

"Any  person  that  buyes  or  cheapens  any  Flesh,  Fish,  Ac,  and 
coming  to  the  markett,  to  forefeit  six  shilling." 

"  That  all  the  above  said  provisions — ^as  Flesh,  Fish,  Ac,  that 
shall  be  exposed  to  sayle  in  any  other  place  then  afore  appointed, 
to  be  forefeited  to  the  Clarke  of  the  Marketts." 

"  Ordered,  that  the  Clerke  of  the  Marketts  receive  for  all  Cattle 
killed  for  the  markett,  for  each  liead  one  shilling ;  for  every  hogg 
or  shoate  brought  or  cut  out  for  sayle  in  the  Markett-House,  three- 
pence ;  and  for  every  sheep,  calfe,  and  lamb,  two-pence.  And  for 
sealeing  of  weights  and  measures  one  penny  a  p  ,  both  great  and 
small." 

One  individual,  named  Henry  Coleman,  soon  after  became  insub- 
ordinate, when  a  '^  complaint  was  made  (on  the  following  9th  of 
May)  by  Captain  Lockard  against  Coleman,  Butcher,  who  deuys 
any  obedience  to  the  Rules  and  Orders  of  this  Citty."  This  ap- 
pears to  have  been  of  so  much  importance,  that  a  committee  was 
appointed  to  *'  wait  upon  His  Excellency  to  acquaint  him  of  the 
said  complaint." 

An  addition  was  made  to  these  laws  on  the  16th  of  October  fol- 
lowing, when  it  was  "Ordered,  that  no  Butcher,  on  any  of  the 
markett  dayes  appointed  within  this  Citty,  shall  sell  any  meate 
under  the  quantity  of  a  whole  quarter  of  Beefe  att  a  time  in  any 
place  but  the  Markett-House  appointed,  shall  forfeit  six  shillings ; 
one-half  to  the  Clarke  of  the  Markett,  the  other  half  for  the  use 
of  the  Citty."  Ten  days  after,  it  was  further  "Ordered,  that  all 
flForfeitures  by  any  Law  or  order  relating  to  the  Markett-House, 
half  the  ffines  to  goe  to  the  Clarke  of  the  Markett,  the  other  halfe 
to  the  Citty." 


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An  additional  flesh  or  meat  market  being  required,  on  the  15th 
of  the  same  month  and  year  it  was  also  *'  Ordered,  that  there  be 
ivx>  markets  tor  flesh-meat  kept;  the  one  in  the  Broadway  over 
against  the  ffort,  (*  Broadway  SliatnbleSy^J  the  other  under  the 
Trees  by  the  Slipp ;  and  that  the  Butchers  shall  be  obliged  to  keep 
flesh  in  both  places;  and  the  Country  people  shall  hviug  flesh  to 
either  of  the  two  places,  suiting  their  conveniency" — "to  pay  noth- 
ing for  anything  they  bring  in  killed" — "and  that  no  butchers' 
meat  be  killed  within  the  City  Oates." 

The  establishment  of  this  new  meat  market-place,  "under  the 
Trees  by  the  Slipp,"  had  no  doubt  the  effect  of  reducing  the  trade 
at  the  "Broadway  Shambles;"  and  in  addition,  its  locality  ap- 
peared much  against  it.  The  city  on  the  East  River  side,  with  its 
ferry,  dock,  slips,  Weigh  and  Custom  Houses,  and  City  Hall,  all 
tended  to  increase  the  growth  and  prosperity  on  that  side,  and  also 
in  that  of  the  sale  of  property.  Several  lots,  in  1692,  were  sold  at 
'•  publick  vandeu  "  along  the  shore  in  the  "  Smith's  Vlie,"  for  about 
sixty*five  dollars  per  lot;  each  buyer  was  bound  to  "dock  out," 
within  a  specified  time. 

These  lots  had  been  surveyed  a  few  years  before  by  Peter  King 
and  Adolph  Pietcrsen,  surveyors  for  the  City  of  New  York,  when 
a  warrant  had  been  given  to  them  by  the  Mayor,  which  is  noticed 
the  4th  day  of  May,  1688,  as  follows :  "  You  are  required  and  com- 
manded to  survey  y*  vacant  Lande  within  this  Citty  near  and  in 
y  Dock,  beginning  from  y*  Weigh-House  to  y*  Citty  Hall,  and  to 
lay  y*  same  out  in  Lottos  of  Eighty  foot  long  into  the  Dock  and 
about  Four  and  Twenty  ffoot  broad,  leaving  sufficient  space  for 
y  street,  as  also  to  lay  out  y*  street  Ranging  with  y*  Here  Graft, 
(canal  in  Broad  Street  J  as  you  shall  receive  further  instructions 
from  me  uppon  y*  surveying  &  laying  out  y*  sid  Lottes;  &  for  so 
doing  this  shall  be  your  warrant.  Given  under  my  hand  in  New 
York,  this  15th  day  of  September,  A"  1686."— N.  Batard,  Mayor. 

The  grounds  around  the  "Broadway  Shambles,"  however,  had 
the  advantage  of  being  occupied  several  times  through  the  course 
of  the  year  with  fairs  and  cattle  markets.  An  act  was  passed  by 
the  General  Assembly,  in  1692,  "  for  settling  the  Fairs  and  Mar^ 
kets,"  of  which  the  following  is  a  part:  "That  there  be  kept  yearly, 
for  the  City  and  County  of  New  York,  two  Fairs  at  the  City  of 
New  York.  The  first  Fair  annually,  to  commence  the  last  Tuesday 
of  April  in  ev^ry  year,  and  to  end  upon  the  Fryday  then  next  fol- 
lowing, being  in  all  four  days  inclusive,  and  no  longer.  And  the 
second  Fair  to  commence  the  first  Tuesday  of  November  in  every 
year,  and  to  end  on  the  Fryday  then  next  following,  being  in  all 
four  dayes  inclusive,  and  no  longer." 


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62  BROADWAT   SHAMBLES. 

To  these  "Pairs"  and  open  markets  were  brought  "cattle, 
horses,  mares,  colts,  grain,  victuals,  provisions,  and  all  other  neces- 
saries, together  with  all  sorts  of  merchandise,  of  what  nature  so- 
ever, and  them  to  expose  to  sale  or  barter,  in  gross  or  by  retail, 
between  the  hours  of  eight  of  the  clock  in  the  morning  and  sunset 
of  the  same  day,  without  payment  of  any  toll,  or  any  other  let, 
hinderance,  or  molestation  whatsoever." 

The  various  domestic  animals  that  were  brought  to  the  city  from 
ihe  northward  had  to  cross  in  the  ferry-boats  or  swim,  as  no  bridge 
had  yet  been  built  across  the  "Spikendevil"  or  Harlaem  River. 
We,  however,  find,  in  the  month  of  January,  1693,  the  "Council" 
met  to  consider  the  offer  of  Frederick  Phillippse  to  build  a  bridge 
where  Kingsbridge  is  now  located.  "  They  doe  find  that  lit  cannot 
be  well  accomplished  without  a  great  charge  unto  this  Citty,  which 
at  present  they  are  not  soe  capable  to  defray ;  and  understanding 
that  Frederick  Philips,  Esq.,  will  undertake  to  build  a  Bridge  at 
the  said  place  (Spikendevil)  for  y  couveniency  of  all  travellers  4 
Drovers  of  Cattell  att  a  moderate  and  reasonable  Toll,  they  doe 
therefore  humbly  pray  your  Excellency,  (the  Governor,)  that  if  the 
said  Mr.  Philips  will  undertake  in  one  year's  time  to  build  a  good 
and  convenient  Drawbridge^  for  the  passage  of  all  Travellers, 
Droves  of  Cattel,  &  passage  of  Carts  &  Waggons,  for  the  Toll  of 
one  penny  ffor  each  neat  Cattel  and  two-pence  for  each  Man  and 
Horse,  and  twelve-pence  for  each  score  of  Hogs  &  Sheep,  &  six- 
pence for  each  cart  &  waggon  that  shall  pass  thereon,  that  he  may 
have  the  preference  of  their  Majesties'  Grant." 

The  bridge  appears  to  have  Ideen  built  soon  after,  and  it  became 
established  as  a  toll-bridge,  and  the  only  bridge  connecting  the 
Island  of  New  York  with  the  main-land  for  a  period  of  more  than 
sixty  years. 

Madame  Knight^  in  her  Journal  of  1704,  says:  "Thursday,  De- 
cember 21,  set  out  for  New  Haven  with  my  kinsman,  Trowbridge, 
and  the  man  that  waited  on  me  about  one  afternoon,  and  about 
three  (o^clock,  P.  M.,)  came  to  half-way  house,  (which  once  stood  at 
the  bottom  of  the  hiU  on  the  old  middle  road,  about  With  Street^  Jc- 
ticeen  the  line  of  the  5th  and  6th  Avenues  J  about  ten  miles  out  of 
town,  where  we  baited  and  went  forward,  and  about  5  came  to 
Spiting  DevUy  else  Kingsbridge,  where  they  pay  three-pence  for  pass- 
ing over  with  a  horse,  which  the  man  that  keeps  the  gate  set  up  at 
the  end  of  the  bridge  receives.  We  hoped  to  reach  Frenchtown 
(New  jRocheUe)  and  lodge  there  that  night,  but  unhappily  lost  our 
way  about  four  miles  short,  and  being  overtaken  by  a  great  storm 
of  wind  and  snow  which  set  full  in  our  faces,  about  dark  we  were 


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BROAD>YAY    SHAMBLES.  63 

Tery  nneasy.  But  meeting  one  Gardner,  who  lived  in  a  cottage 
thereabout,  offered  us  his  fire  to  set  by,  having  but  one  poor  bedd, 
and  bis  wife  not  well."  She  was  taken  further  on,  where  she  obtain- 
ed quarters. 

At  this  period,  across  this  Bridge  was  the  only  road  to  Boston, 
and  that  but  seldom  traveled.  The  Albany  Turnpike  had  not  yet 
been  opened,  and  only  a  few  very  rough  by-roads,  which  answered 
the  purpose  of  a  few  fanners  to  reach  the  North  or  East  River,  as 
they  usually  came  by  water  to  the  city  with  their  produce.  How- 
ever, some  few  farmers  in  the  interior,  and  drovers  from  Connecti- 
cut, with  cattle  and  horses,  occasionally  passed  over  it.  But  at  a 
later  period,  when  the  turnpikes  were  opened,  and  traveling  on 
them  became  general,  occasionally  the  farmers  and  drovers  would 
complain  of  the  many  detentions,  and  "  at  times  the  toll  was  so 
variously  charged  as  to  become  grevious,"  which  no  doubt  led  Jacob 
Dyckman,  (the  grandfather  of  ez-Alderman  Isaac  Dyckman,)  a 
blacksmith,  a  farmer,  and  also  a  tavern-keeper,  with  several  other 
public-spirited  farmers,  in  the  year  1758,  to  erect  another  bridge 
across  the  river  near  this  old  one.  This  new  bridge,  as  appears 
from  the  following  communication,  was  called  "  Free  Bridge  Dyck- 
man's;"*  and  then  follows  on,  "Whereas  the  crossing  at  Harlaem 
River,  on  the  high-road  to  Boston  by  Kingsbridge,  according  to 
an  established  toll,  became  very  changeable  and  burthensome  to 
travellers  in  general,  and  to  the  inhabitants  of  Westchester  and 
Dutchess  Counties  in  particular :  the  toll  received  passing  the  bridge 
being  for  each  carriage,  9d.;  each  horse  and  head  of  cattle,  3d.;  and 
a  man  Id.  Notice  is  therefore  hereby  given  that  certain  public- 
spirited  persons  have  lately  contributed  a  large  sum  of  money,  and 
therewith  built  a  fine  new  bridge  across  the  said  river,  a  little  to  the 
southward  of  the  said  bridge,  which  shortens  the  public  road  about 
half  a  mile ;  and  the  said  new  bridge  is  free  and  exempted  for  all 
toll  whatsoever.  (Signed)  Jacob  Dyckman,  Jun'r;  (dated)  Harlaem, 
nth  November,  (1758.)" 

The  following  letter  from  Benjamin  Palmer  to  Colonel  Aaron 
Burr,  Member  of  Assembly  of  the  City  and  County  of  New  York, 
in  the  year  1798,  will  further  explain  how  this  bridge  was  built,  and 
its  cost :  **Sir — I  called  at  your  house  the  day  you  went  to  Albany, 
but  you  was  gone  on  your  journey.  I  had  a  desire  to  inform  you  per- 
sonally concerning  the  Free  Bridge^  which  I  built  over  Harlaem 
River. 

"  Sir,  I  undertook  to  raise  the  money  by  subscription,  and  expected 
to  build  it  near  the  old  bridge,  called  King's  Bridge;  but  when  I 
•  N.  V.  Mercury,  December  18, 176a 


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64  BROADWAY   SHAMBLES. 

found  that  Col.  Philips  had  got  that  right  from  the  Government  of 
this  State,  it  could  not  be  built  in  any  other  place  than  from  Thomas 
Vermillia's  land,  across  to  Jacob  Dyckman's  land ;  therefore,  I  took 
them  into  partnership  with  me  to  build  said  bridge.  We  chose 
Walter  Briggs  (since  deceased)  to  be  our  treasurer,  to  receive  the 
subscription  money,  and  to  pay  the  workmen  and  other  costs  arising 
from  the  building  said  bridge,  but  there  was  not  money  enough  by 
a  considerable  sum  to  finish  it,  because  it  took  twice  as  much  to 
build  it  in  that  place  as  it  would  where  I  first  proposed ;  therefore, 
there  was  not  money  enough  to  build  said  bridge  raised  by  subscrip- 
tion. I  then  paid  into  the  hands  of  Mr.  Briggs,  our  treasurer,  £120 
in  cash  to  finish  it,  and  he  allowed  me  £20  14s.  for  my  time,  trouble, 
and  expenses  in  getting  the  subscription  signed,  collecting  the  money 
and  attending  the  building  of  said  bridge,  which  sum  makes  £140 
14s.,  according  to  my  petition;  which  sum  I  have  never  been  paid, 
nor  ever  received  any  satisfaction  for  it. 

"  Besides  this  loss,  I  was  twice  pressed  in  one  year,  as  a  soldier, 
to  go  to  Canada,  there  then  being  a  war  between  England  and 
Prance ;  therefore  I  was  obliged  to  hire  two  men  to  go  in  my  place 
— the  one  cost  me  £5,  the  other  £20,  supposed  by  the  people  in  gen- 
eral, as  well  as  myself,  to  have  been  the  orders  of  Col.  Philips;  be- 
cause he  knew  it  would  stop  his  bridge  from  taking  toll.  Notwith- 
standing this,  I  continued  building  the/ree  bridge  until  finished. 

"  Sir — the  reason  of  my  writing  particularly  to  you,  was  because 
Mr.  John  Bartow  was  acquainted  with  you — ^he  told  me  that  he  had 
talked  to  several  gentlemen  about  the  building  this  bridge — they 
said  it  was  just  that  I  should  be  paid ;  for  it  had  saved  many  thou- 
sand pounds  to  the  people  of  this  State.  He  told  me  if  I  would 
draw  up  a  petition,  and  send  it  to  the  Assembly,  he  would  sign  it, 
and  speak  to  you,  sir,  concerning  it,  and  desire  you  to  lay  it  before 
the  Honorable  the  House  of  Representatives,  and  speals:  in  favor 
of  it,  as  it  was  a  just  debt,  and  ought  to  be  paid. 

"  Mr.  Bartow  further  said,  he  knew  it  was  CoL  Philips*  interest 
in  the  House  to  stop  the  petition  from  being  granted. 

"  I  shall  be  much  obliged  to  you,  sir,  if  you  will  lay  this  petition 
before  the  House,  and  speak  in  favor  of  it,  as  in  your  wisdom  you 
may  think  fit.  Benjamin  Palmer."* 

The  following  remarks  in  relation  to  it  are  also  interesting: 
"  When  Col.  Burr  returned  from  the.Legislature,  he  told  Mr.  Palmer 
that  there  were  no  hopes  of  ever  getting  any  assistance  from  the 
Legislature  for  building  the  above  bridge;  and  told  that  if  Mr. 
Palmer  would  draw  up  a  subscription  paper,  he  would  subsoribe  to 
*  N.  Y.  Gazette,  September  6, 1800. 


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BROADWAY   SHAMBLES.  65 

it  himself;  for,  that  it  was  not  worth  his  while  to  petition  any  more 
concerning  it;  and  that,  as  it  was  began  by  subscription,  there  was 
no  other  way  than  to  finish  it  by  subscription. 

"And  whereas  said  bridge  was  then  considered  as  a  grieyous  and 
heavy  tax  on  the  public.  The  profits  went  into  no  public  funds,  but 
only  to  enhance  the  private  fortune  of  a  particular  subject;  and  also 
it  was  a  neat  imposition  on  the  public,  for  said  bridge  separated  the 
City  and  County  of  New  York,  and  the  people  from  tiie  country 
from  coming  into  and  going  from  the  city — they  could  neither  pass 
nor  repass,  by  land,  without  going  over  said  bridge,  paying  an  ex- 
travagant tax  or  toll.  The  gates  were  locked  and  barred  at  night, 
so  that  if  people's  business  was  ever  so  urgent,  they  were  obliged  to 
stand  and  knock,  let  the  weather  be  ever  so  cold  or  stormy,  until  a 
servant  pleased  to  come  and  unlock  the  gate,  the  house  being  12  or 
15  rods  from  it;  therefore,  Mr.  Palmer,  on  the  frequent  complaints 
of  the  people,  undertook  to  build  a/ree  bridge  over  Harlaem  River 
by  subscription ;  and  there  not  being  money  enough  raised  to  finish 
said  bridge,  Mr.  Palmer  advanced  j£l20  in  cash  to  finish  it,  besides 
his  time  and  trouble,  and  other  expenses.  This  bridge  was  finished 
in  the  year  1769. 

*'  Walter  Briggs,  who  was  treasurer,  allowed  Mr.  Palmer  £20 14s. 
for  the  purpose  above  mentioned,  which  may  be  seen  by  Mr.  Briggs' 
book  of  accounts — the  two  sums,  with  the  interests,  make  upwards 
of  1,500  dollars — a  sum  too  great  to  lay  on  one  man,  when  we  all 
had  the  honor  and  profit  of  a/ree  bridge^  as  well  as  himself;  there- 
fore let  us  consider  Mr.  Palmer's  situation,  and  do  unto  him  as  we 
would  desire  others  to  do  unto  us. 

**  Such  gentlemen  as  can  spare  a  few  dollars  to  make  up  his  loss, 
do  it  freely ;  and  not  say,  this  bridge  was  built  before  we  was  born. 
If  nothing  for  the  public  good  had  been  built  before  we  were  bom, 
we  should  be  in  a  deplorable  situation. 

"  Suppose  young  people  should  say,  the  Independence  of  these 
States  was  dcNsIared  before  they  were  bom,  and  that  they  would  not 
pay  the  old  debts  contracted  to  obtain  their  independence ;  but  there 
is  a  law  to  oblige  them  to  pay.  Mr.  Palmer  has  no  law  to  oblige 
the  people  to  pay  him  for  freeing  them  from  a  grievous  and  heavy 
tax  laid  on  them  for  passing  a  toll-bridge,  by  building  a/ree  one. 
And  whereas,  it  was  the  first  step  towards  freedom  in  tiiis  State, 
and  it  is  hoped  the  Bons  of  Freedom  will  step  forward  and  cast  in 
their  mite ;  for  it  was  almost  as  difScult  for  Mr.  Palmer  to  get  a/ree 
bridge  in  those  days,  as  it  was  for  America  to  get  her  freedom  and 
independence  from  Oreat  Britain. 

''  When  this/ree  bridge  was  finished,  there  was  a  fine  fat  ox  roast- 
Vol.  I.— 5 


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66  BROADWAY   SHAMBLES. 

ed  on  the  Oreen,  and  thousands  from  the  city  and  coontrj  partook 
of  the  ox,  and  rejoiced  greatly. 

"  When  this/ree  bridge  was  finished,  Col.  Philips  was  obliged  to 
make  his  a  free  bridge  also ;  and  it  would  have  continued  a  toll- 
bridge  to  this  day,  had  it  not  been  for  the  spirited  exertions  of  Mr. 
Palmer." 

This  free  bridge  was  noticed  as  having  been  finished  in  the  year 
1759,  and  the  public  opening  of  it  was  thus  announced:  "  These  aie 
to  acquaint  the  public,  that  to-morrow  (2d  of  January,  1759,)  the 
free  bridge  erected  and  built  across  Harlaem  River  will  be  finished 
and  completed;  and  on  the  same  day  there  will  be  a  stately  ox 
roasted  whole  on  the  Green,  for  and  as  a  small  entertainment  to  the 
loyal  people  who  come."* 

In  the  month  of  April  following  we  find,  ''To  be  let,  and  entered 
upon  immediately,  the  house,  farm,  and  bridge  at  King's  Bridge,  in  the 
manor  of  Philipsburgh,  in  the  County  of  Westchester.  For  particu* 
lars  inquire  of  Frederick  Phillipse."t 

From  a  petition  and  report  made  in  the  year  1824,  a  few  more 
interesting  facts  are  brought  forth.  The  first  introduces  ''the 
bridge  formerly  called  the  '  free  bridge'  across  Harlaem  River,  lead- 
ing from  New  York  Island  to  Westchester,  has  become  much  de- 
cayed, and  in  a  condition  to  be  dangerous  to  persons  and  carriages 
passing  and  repassing  over  the  same. 

"  The  bridge  is  much  used  by  persons  from  Westchester,  coming 
to  the  New  York  market,  and  others,  and  is  highly  necessary  to  be 
kept  in  good  order.''  This  was  dated  October  7, 1824,  and  signed 
by  Jacobus  Dykman,  James  De  Voe,  Aaron  Post,  Henry  Post,  Denis 
Post,  Henry  Thison,  and  Benjamin  Lynt.  In  the  month  of  Decem- 
ber following,  the  "  Road  Committee"  reported :  "  The  bridge  to  be 
repaired  connects  the  island  of  New  York  with  that  part  of  West- 
chester County  lying  on  Harlaem  River,  called  the  '  Manor  of  Ford- 
ham,'  and  is  a  short  distance  from  the  mouth  of  'Spyt  den  Duyvel' 
Creek,  through  which  the  waters  of  said  river  flow  into  the  Hudson. 

"  This  bridge  was  erected  about  sixty  years  ago  by  individual 
subscription,  to  avoid  the  unjust  exactions  of  the  proprietcrs  of 
Eingsbridge.  But  during  our  struggle  for  independence  it  was  de- 
stroyed by  the  enemy  to  prevent  the  passage  of  the  American  Army 
across  the  river;  the  passage  of  the  other  bridge  being  defended  by 
a  redoubt.  Ten  or  twelve  years  since,  however,  the  inhabitants  in 
its  vicinity  raised  another  subscription  and  rebuilt  it,  at  an  expense^ 
as  your  Committee  are  informed,  of  about  one  thousand  doUars^  and 
have  kept  it  in  repair  at  their  own  cost,  excepting  the  appropria* 
•  N.  Y.  Metcoiy.  t  Gasette,  April  9. 


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BROADWAY   SHAMBLES.  67 

tions  made  hj  this  Board  three  or  four  years  ago  of  two  handred 
dollars,  twenty  of  which  remain  unexpended.  It  is  now  in  snch  a 
state  of  decay  that  it  cannot  be  passed  without  great  danger,  and 
humanity  at  least  requires  that  it  should  be  immediately  and  sub* 
stantially  repaired,  or  that  it  should  be  entirely  removed,  that  the 
safety  of  trayelers  who  do  not  know  its  situation  may  not  be  en- 
dangered. It  is  Tirtually  the  property  of  the  corporation,  as  the 
sovereignty  of  that  body  over  Harlaem  River  to  low-water  mark  on 
the  northern  or  Westchester  side  of  it  has  never  been  disputed." 

**  Your  Committee  are  informed  that  there  is  considerable  trav- 
eling over  this  bridge;  that  the  inhabitants  of  a  large  district  of 
Westchester  County  pass  it  with  produce  for  our  market ;  if  so,  may 
it  not  in  time  be  productive  of  the  most  beneficial  effects,  by  reducing 
the  price  of  such  vegetables  as  come  daily  to  our  city?  For  it  can- 
not be  denied  that  a  toll-bridge  is  a  tax  on  all  the  produce  which 
passes  over  it,  which  the  consumer  has  to  pay;  if,  therefore,  the 
produce  which  crosses  Harlaem  River,  and  reaches  our  market  by 
land,  can  toll  free,  it  could  be  afforded  and  would  be  sold  at  a  less 
price  than  it  now  is."  '*  The  Committee  recommend  the  appropria- 
tion of  two  hundred  and  eighty  dollars  to  assist  to  rebuild  in  a  safe 
and  substantial  manner  the  aforesaid  bridge,  and  to  keep  the  same 
in  repair  for  the  space  of  seven  years." 

Returning  to  the  latter  part  of  the  sixteenth  century,  we  find  the 
inhabitants  rather  a  mixed  people ;  some  doing  illy  and  some  well, 
bot  the  Dutch  Burghers  had  the  credit  of  being  the  most  industrious 
and  proitperous.  Charles  Lodowicke,  in  a  letter  to  his  uncle,  Mr. 
FrancU  Lodowicke.  dated  May  20, 1692,  says,  "Our  chicfest  unhappy- 
ness  here  is  too  great  a  mixture  of  nations,  and  y*  English  y  least 
part;  jT  French  protestants  have  in  y"  late  King's  Reign  resorted 
hither  in  great  nn(m)bers  proportionately  to  y«  other  nations'  in- 
habitants. Y'*  Dutch  generally  y^  mostfrugall  and  laborious,  and 
consequently  y^"  richest;  whereas  most  of  y«  English  are y  contrary, 
especially  y*^  trading  part." 

'*  Most  sorts  of  European  animalls  thrive  here  very  well,  tho'  j^ 
country  before  y-  discovery  was  not  known  to  have  produced  any 
of  those  usual  sorts  of  Beasts,  as  Horses,  Cows,  Sheep,  Hojrgs,  or 
Ooats;  Sheep  would  increase  here  and  do  very  much.  English  or 
clover  grass  agreeing  very  well  with  y^  land,  yet  y^"  stature  of 
y^  cattle  seem  rather  to  decrease  here,  w^^  might  doubtless  in  a 
great  measure  be  helpt  by  care  and  good  husbandry.  An  Ox  shall 
ordinarily  weigh  here  six  hundred  weight,  rarely  one  thousand." 
"^▲11  sorts  of  Cattle  are  now  in  abundance  and  increase  dayly :  a 
Hor^  is  sold  from  2  to  6  pound,  an  Ox  or  Cow  from  2  to  5  pound, 
this  country  money,  ir^^  is  25  per  cent,  worse  than  sterling." 


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(}g  BROADWAY   SHAMBLES. 

The  General  Aeeembly,  however,  in  the  following  year,  regnlated 
the  price  of  slaves,  domestic  animals,  and  other  property,  in  the  fol* 
lowing  terms:  *'  Resolved^  1.  That  all  negro  and  Indian  slaves,  from 
twelve  years  old  to  sixty,  be  valued  at  twelve  ponnds  per  head. 

'*  2.  That  all  horses  and  neat  cattle,  from  three  years  old  and  up- 
wards, be  valued  at  thirty  shillings  per  head. 

"  3.  That  all  sheep  and  goats,  from  one  year  old  and  upwards,  be 
valued  at  three  shillings  per  head. 

'*  4.  That  all  hogs,  from  half  a  year  old  and  upwards,  be  valued 
at  three  shillings  per  head. 

"  5.  That  all  lands,  meadows,  and  houses,  throughout  this  prov- 
ince, shall  be  valued  according  to  the  yearly  income  of  the  same."* 

On  the  25th  of  September,  1694,  the  Broadway  Shambles,  in  the 
Broadway,  were  ordered  "  to  be  lett  to  Farme  unto  Henry  Crosby, 
of  this  City,  Butcher ^  for  the  term  of  seven  years,  att  one  pound 
per  annum,  upon  condition  that  he  put  the  house  in  good  repair,  and 
soe  to  maintain  and  give  up  the  house  att  the  expiration  of  the 
term  aforesaid."t  The  next  year  Crosby  sought  and  procured  a 
better  bargain  from  the  Common  Council,  as  appears  on  the  19th  of 
June,  1695.  "  Upon  the  humble  request  of  Henry  Crosby,  y*  Butch* 
er  in  the  Broadway,  that  the  Citty  would  be  pleased  to  grant  him 
liberty  to  fence  in  a  small  piece  of  ground,  the  breadth  of  his  shop, 
and  about  fourteen  or  fifteen  feet  long,  for  the  keeping  of  sheep  and 
for  slaughter,  which  was  granted." 

Crosby's  lease  expired,  when  a  committee  was  ordered,  on  the 
3d  September,  1702,  ''  to  lett  to  Farme  the  old  market-house  in 
Broadway,  not  exceeding  the  term  of  five  years."  This  term  it 
changed  hands,  for  I  find  it  in  the  possession  of  *' Jeremiah  Calcutt, 
of  this  city,  butcher,"  at  the  expiration  of  the  term,  who  afterwards, 
on  the  29th  September,  1703,  had  influence  enough  in  the  Common 
Council  to  be  appointed  "  High  Constable."  Whether  he  was  ap- 
pointed for  ^iciency,  or  from  political  favor,  or  whether  it  was 
necessary  to/ee-e(2  the  whole  of  the  Common  Council,  (which  at  that 
period  included  the  Mayor,)  before  the  important  office  could  be  ob- 
tained, is  not  now  known ;  although,  if  the  latter,  the  expenses  for 
a  ''grmdfeedr  or  feast,  would  not  now  be  considered  a  large  sum ; 
but  at  that  period,  however,  when  a  grand  dinner  was  given,  or  oiv 
dered  for  the  Common  Council,  every  item  was  afterwards  made 
out  in  the  bill,  of  which  the  following  is  a  specimen : 

''An  account  of  Richard  Harris,  against  the  Mayor,  Aldermen, 
Ac,  Dr.    Dated  December  19,  1704. 

'^To  a  piece  of  beef  and  cabbage,      •       -       -       -  £0    7  6 
*  Joomal  of  Aflsembly,  roL  L,  p.  87.  f  ^^  Becocda. 


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BROADWAY   SHAMBLES. 


69 


To  a  dish  of  tripe  and  oow  heel, 

To  a  1^  of  pork  and  turnips, 

To  2  puddings, 

To  a  surloyn  of  beef. 

To  a  turkey  and  onions, 

To  a  1^  of  matton  and  pickles. 

To  a  dish  of  chickens. 

To  minced  pycs,     - 

To  fine  cheese,  bread,  Ac, 

To  batter  for  sance. 

To  hire  of  two  negroes,  to  assist, 

To  dressing  dinner,  Ac, 

To  81  bottles  of  wine, 

To  beer  and  syder. 


0 
0 
0 
0 
0 
0 
0 
1 
0 
0 
0 
1 
3 
0 


6  0 

8  3 
14  6 
13  6 

9  0 
6  0 

10  6 

4  0 

7 

7 

6 

4 

2 
12 


£10  18  6" 

The  above  was  considered  an  enormous  hiB,  but  after  considering 
the  large  number  of  items,  "  it  was  allowed."  The  ivine  item  ap- 
pears very  heavy,  but  in  those  days  it  was  a  custom  to  prepare 
largely  of  liquid  stimulants,  in  the  event  of  a  victory,  birth-days,  or 
even  the  **  making  of  vendues."  When  the  "  great  victory  over  the 
Spanish  and  French  fleets  at  Vigo"  was  celebrated,  a  few  years  be- 
fore, it  ^a  *' Ordered  that  a  public  bonfire  be  made,  and  ten  gallons 
of  wine  Vd  a  barrel  of  beer  provided,  and  all  the  houses  to  be  illu- 
minated." 

At  this  period,  Madame  Knight,  a  Boston  lady,  made  a  journey 
to  this  city  on  horseback,  and  in  her  '*  JoumaH  she  notices  many 
interesting  customs,  fashions,  Ac,  of  the  citizens  on  certain  occa- 
sions. She  says:  "They  are  not  strict  in  keeping  the  Sabbath  as 
in  Boston  and  other  places  where  I  had  been,  but  seem  to  deal  with 
great  exactness,  as  far  as  I  see  or  deal  with. 

*"  They  are  sociable  to  one  another,  and  courteous  and  civil  to 
strangers,  and  fare  well  in  their  houses. 

"  The  English  go  very  fashionable  in  their  dress ;  but  the  Dutch, 
especially  the  middling  sort,  differ  from  our  women,  in  their  habit 
go  loose,  wear  French  muches,  which  are  like  a  cap,  and  a  head-band 
in  one,  leaving  their  ears  bare,  which  are  set  out  with  jewels  of  a 
large  size,  and  many  in  number.  And  their  fingers  hoop't  with 
rings,  some  with  large  stones  in  them  of  many  colors;  as  were  their 
pendants  in  their  ears,  which  you  should  see  very  old  women  wear  as 
well  as  young. 

*•  They  have  vendues  very  frequently,  and  make  their  earnings 
very  well  by  them,  for  they  treat  with  good  liquor  liberally,  and 


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70  CUSTOK-HOUSE  BRIDGE  MARKET. 

the  customers  drink  as  liberally,  and  generally  pay  for 't  as  well,  by 
paying  for  that  which  they  bid  up  briskly  for,  after  the  sacklkBS  gone 
plentifully  about,  tho'  sometimes  good  penny  worth  are  got  there* 

"  Their  diversion  in  the  winter  is  riding  sleys  about  three  miles 
out  of  town,  where  they  have  houses  of  entertainment  at  a  place 
called  the  Botvery;  and  some  go  to  friends'  houses,  who  handsomely 
treat  them.  Mr.  Borroughs  carry'd  his  spause  and  daughter  and 
myself  out  to  one  Madame  Dowes',  a  gentlewoman  that  lived  at  a 
farm-house,  who  gave  us  entertainment  of  five  or  six  dishes,  and 
choice  beer  and  metheglin,  cyder,  &c.,  all  which  she  said  was  the 
produce  of  her  farm. 

"  I  believe  we  met  50  or  60  slays  that  day ;  they  fly  with  great 
swiftness,  and  some  are  so  furious  that  they'le  turn  out  of  the  path 
for  none  except  a  loaden  cart.  Nor  do  they  ^pare  for  any  diversion 
the  place  affords,  and  sociable  to  a  degree,  theyr  tables  being  as 
free  to  their  neighbours  as  to  themselves."  We  must,  however, 
take  leave  of  these  happy  people,  and  at  a  later  period  again  refer 
to  them  or  their  generations. 

On  the  28th  of  October,  1707,  a  "  resolution  passed,  that  the 
butcher's  shop  in  the  Broadway  now  in  the  occupation  of  Jeremiah 
Calcutt  be  demolished  and  pulled  down,  and  that  the  said  Jeremiah 
Calcutt  have  liberty  to  convert  the  materials  thereof  to  his  own 
use,  by  the  Mayor's  lysense,  he  producing  his  lease  thereof  to  the 
Mayor."*  It  was  soon  after  taken  down,  but  no  doubt^e  plaoe 
was  held  as  a  market-place  for  fairs  and  the  like  for  many  years 
after,  as  I  find,  in  1720,  ''  the  old  market-place  in  the  Broadway  be 
and  are  hereby  held  as  a  public  market-place,  until  further  orders." 


CUSTOM-HOUSE  BRIDGE  MARKET. 

1675.  In  the  year  1675,  a  General  Court  of  Assize  was  held  in 
this  city,  "  beginning  on  the  6th  and  ending  on  the  13th  day  of  Oc- 
tober," when,  among  other  proceedings,  "  a  weekly  markett "  was 
ordered  to  be  held,  and  "a  fitt  house  to  be  built  by  the  water-side," 
near  where  the  "Marke^Place  at  the  Strand"  had  been  formerly 
held.  This  was  soon  followed  by  a  proclamation  from  Governor 
Andross,  which  came  before  the  Common  Council  on  the  29th  of 
January  of  the  following  year,  and  read  as  follows:  "Whereas,  as 
a  weekly  markett  in  this  citty  hath  beene  thought  necessary  for  the 

*  City  Reooida. 


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CUSTOMHOUSE   BRIDGE   MARKET.  71 

oonyenience,  good,  and  welfare  of  the  inhabitants  and  neighbour- 
hood, for  wh<^b  a  fitt  house  being  now  built  by  the  water-side,  neare 
the  Bridge  and  Weigh-House,  I  have,  by  the  advice  of  my  Councell 
and  Gort  of  Mayor  and  Aldermen,  resolved  and  ordered,  and  doe 
hereby  publish  the  said  markett  to  begine  on  Saturday,  the  24th  of 
March  next  ensuinge,  in  the  afores^  house,  and  soe  every  Saturday 
foUowinge,  for  the  space  of  three  yeares.^^* 

The  location  of  this  ''Jitt  house  by  the  water-side,  neare  the 
Bridge  and  Weigh-House,"  stood  about  where  the  corner  of  Pearl 
and  Moore  Streets  now  meet;  and  no  doubt,  when  it  was  erected, 
the  business  which  came  to  the  "Marke^Place  at  the  Strand"  was 
removed  into  it.  It  appeared  to  accommodate  the  country  people 
and  Indians,  who  came  by  water  with  poultry,  fish,  butter,  cheese, 
Ac;  while  those  who  brought  ''flesh-meat"  went  up  the  canal  in 
Broad  Street,  to  the  Marketfield  Street,  and  so  across  into  the 
^  Broadway  Shambles." 

About  this  period,  the  Rev.  Mr.  Wooley,  in  his  Journal,  notices 
the  Indians,  with  their  swift  canoes :  ''  In  which  they  bring  oysters 
and  other  fish  for  the  market;  they  are  so  light  and  portable,  that 
a  man  and  his  squaw  will  take  them  upon  their  sholders  and  carry 
them  by  land  from  one  river  to  another,  with  a  wonderful  expedi- 
tion; they  will  venture  with  them  in  a  dangerous  current,  even 
through  Hell-gate  itself,  which  lies  in  an  arm  of  the  sea,  about  ten 
miles  from  New  York  eastward  to  New  England,  as  dangerous  and 
as  accountable  as  the  Norway  whirlpool  cr  maelstrom:  in  this 
Hell-gate,  which  is  a  narrow  passage,  runneth  a  rapid,  violent 
stream,  both  upon  flood  and  ebb ;  and  in  the  middle  lieth  some  isl- 
ands of  rocks,  upon  which  the  current  sets  so  violently,  that  it 
threatens  present  shipwrack;  and  upon  the  flood  is  a  large  whirl- 
pool, which  sends  forth  a  continual  hedious  roaring;  it  is  a  place 
of  great  defence  against  an  enemy  coming  that  way,  which  a  small 
fortification  would  absolutely  prevent,  by  forcing  them  to  come  in  at 
the  west  end  of  Long  Island  by  Sandy  Hook,  where  Nutien  Island  f 
would  force  them  within  the  command  of  the  fort  of  New  York." 

Mr.  Wooley,  in  another  part  of  his  Journal,  says:  "The  City  of 
New  York  in  my  time  (1678-9)  was  as  large  as  some  market  towns 
with  OS,  all  built  the  London  way ;  the  Garrison  side  of  a  high  situ- 
ation and  a  pleasant  prospect ;  the  Island  it  stands  on  all  a  level 
and  champain ;  the  diversion  especially  in  the  winter  season  used 

*  Oltj  Records. 

(t  TbU  evidenoe  would  lead  us  to  suppose  that  there  could  not  have  been  much  of  a 
cfaaooel,  even  at  that  period,  between  Red  Hook  and  Nutten  or  Governor's  Island,  and 
Ytrj  likely  some  filty  jetn  before,  as  noUoed  on  page  15,  had  been  in  the  state  as  there 
ftprfscnted.) 


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72  CUSTOM-HOUSE   BRIDGE   MARKET. 

by  the  Dutch  is  aurigation,  t.  e.,  riding  about  in  wagons,  which  to 
allowed  by  physicians  to  be  a  very  hoalthfal  exercise  by  Land.  And 
upon  the  Ice  it's  admirable  to  see  Men  and  Women  as  it  were  flying 
upon  their  Skates  from  place  to  place,  with  markets  upon  Uieir 
Heads  and  Backs." 

He  further  says:  "All  Commodities  and  Trades  are  dearer  or 
cheaper  according  to  the  plenty  of  importation;"  and  ''for  what  I 
had  occasion,  some  things  were  reasonable,  some  dear.  I  paid  for 
two  loads  of  Oats  in  the  straw  18  shillings  to  one  Henry  Dyer;  to 
the  same,  for  a  Load  of  Pease-straw,  six  shillings ;  paid  to  Thomas 
Davis,  for  shooing  my  Horse,  three  shillings,  for  in  that  place 
Horses  are  seldom,  some  not  shod  at  all,  their  Hoofs,  by  running 
in  the  woods  so  long  before  they  are  backed,  are  like  flints:  Paid 
to  Derick,  t.  e.,  Richard  Secah's  Son,  for  a  Load  of  Hay,  twelve 
shillings ;  Paid  to  Denys  Fisher's  Son,  a  Carpenter,  for  two  days' 
work  in  the  Stable,  eight  shillings ;  for  a  Curry-Comb  and  Horse- 
brush,  four  shillings;  to  Jonathan,  the  Barber,  XI  4b.  the  year;  to 
the  Shoo-maker,  for  a  pair  of  Boots  and  Shooes,  £1  Ss.;  to  the 
Washerwoman  or  Laundress,  JGI  5s.  6d.  the  year." 

Of  the  inhabitants  he  says,  ''  Both  English  and  Dutch  (are)  very 
civil  and  courteous,  as  I  may  speak  by  experience,  amongst  whom  I 
have  often  wished  myself  and  family,  to  whose  tables  I  was  fre- 
quently invited,  and  always  concluded  with  a  generous  bottle  of 
Madera.  I  cannot  say  I  observed  any  swearing  or  quarrelling,  but 
what  was  easily  reconciled  and  recanted  by  a  mild  rebuke,  except 
once  betwixt  two  Dutch  Boors,  (whose  usual  oath  is  sacrament,) 
which,  abateing  the  abusive  language,  was  no  unpleasant  scene. 
As  soon  as  they  met,  (which  was  after  they  had  alarm'd  the  neigh- 
bourhood,) they  seized  each  other's  hair  with  their  forefeet,  and 
down  thtgr  went  to  the  sod,  their  vrows  and  families  crying  out  be- 
cause they  could  not  part  them ;  which  fray  happening  against  my 
chamber  window,  I  called  up  one  of  my  acquaintance,  and  ordered 
him  to  fetch  a  kit  full  of  water  and  discharge  it  at  them,  which  in^- 
mediately  cool'd  their  courage,  and  loosed  their  grapples;  so  we 
used  to  part  our  mastiffs  in  England.  In  the  same  City  of  New 
York,  when  I  was  Minister  to  the  English,  there  were  two  other 
Ministers,  or  Domines,  as  they  were  called  there,  the  one  a  Lutheran, 
a  German  or  High  Dutch ;  the  other,  a  Calvinist,  was  Hollander  or 
Low  Dutchman,  who  behav'd  themselves  one  towards  another  so 
shily  and  uncharitably  as  if  Luther  and  Calvin  had  bequeathed 
and  entailed  their  virulent  and  bigotted  spirits  upon  them  and  their 
heirs  forever.  They  had  not  visited  or  spoken  to  each  other  with 
any  respect  for  six  years  together  before  my  being  there,  with  whom 


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GUSTOM-HOUSE  BRIDGE   MARKET.  73 

I  being  much  acquainted,  I  invited  them  both,  with  their  vrows,  to 
a  supper  one  night  unknown  to  each  other,  with  an  obligation  that 
ihej  should  not  speak  one  word  in  Dutch,  under  the  penalty  of  a 
bottle  of  Medara,  alledging  I  was  so  imperfect  in  that  language  that 
we  could  not  manage  a  sociable  discourse ;  so  accordingly  they  came, 
and  at  the  first  interview  they  stood  so  appaled  as  if  the  ghosts  of 
Luther  and  Calvin  had  suffered  a  transmigration,  but  the  amaze  soon 
went  off  with  a  salve  tu  quoqne,  and  a  bottle  of  wine,  of  which  the 
Calvinist  Domine  was  a  true  carouser,  and  so  we  continued  our  Men- 
salta  the  whole  meeting  in  Latine,  which  they  both  spoke  so  fluently 
and  promptly,  that  I  blush'd  at  myself  with  a  passionate  regret  that 
I  could  not  keep  pace  with  them." 

The  growth  of  the  city  had  at  the  end  of  three  years  so  much  in- 
creased, that  it  seemed  to  demand  more  than  one  market-day ;  and 
as  this  (Saturday)  was  about  to  expire,  according  to  the  order  of  the 
24th  of  March,  1675,  it  was  necessary  to  renew  it,  and  also  to  ap- 
point another  day ;  which,  however,  did  not  take  place  until  the  9th 
of  March,  1679-^80,  when  "for  ye  better  supply  of  y«  Cy tie"— with 
provisions  and  other  necessaries — ^"from  this  day  forward  another 
market  extraordinary  shall  be  kept  every  week,  weekly,  on  Wednes- 
day, att  ye  usual  market-place,  neere  y®  Bridge  and  Weigh-House."* 
The  population  two  years  after  is  shown  to  have  been  about  2,000 
whites,  besides  negroes  and  slaves;  number  of  houses  207,  besides 
bams  and  sheds. 

The  market  regulations  in  existence  (prior  to  1688)  did  not  an- 
swer altogether,  or  were  not  rigid  enough  to  meet  forestallers  and 
sellers  of  unsound  meats,  to  provide  in  what  manner  certain  articles 
should  be  sold,  Ac,  which  this  increased  and  mixed  population 
would  seem  to  have  demanded.  The  city,  however,  was  soon  after- 
wards supplied  with  such  laws,  which  were  ordained  and  enacted  on 
the  15th  of  March,  1688;  part  of  them  read  as  follows:  *'  That  fish, 
butter,  cheese,  eggs,  poultry,  fruit,  roots,  and  herbs  may  be  sold 
every  day  in  the  week  at  any  time,  in  the  market  or  other  conven- 
ient places." 

"  That  no  person  shall  forstal  any  provision  or  victuals  coming  to 
the  markett,  as  to  buy  in  any  private  or  other  place  than  the  mar- 
kett,  under  pain  of  forfeiture  of  the  same,  whether  it  be  found  in  the 
hands  of  buyer  or  seller. 

^  No  person  shall  engross  any  provision  or  victuals  which  is  in 
the  market,  or  by  the  market,  to  retail  there  again,  especially  such 
as  be  known  for  Hucksters,  Butchers,  or  other  people  occupjring 
fhcir  living  by  such  provisions  or  victuals  as  they  shall  so  engrossi 
under  j^ain  of  such  provisions  and  victuals  so  engrossed. 

*  City  RecordB. 


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74  CUSTOM-HOUSE   BRIDGE   MARKET. 

"  No  butter,  cheese,  or  other  provisions  sold  by  weight,  shall  be 
sold  but  according  to  the  weight  established. 

"  No  Huckster  shall  engross  any  poultry,  eggs,  or  fresh  butter 
coming  to  the  market,  ^der  pain  of  forty  shillings. 

''  No  unwholesome  or  stale  victuals  shall  be  sold  in  the  market, 
under  the  pain  of  forty  shillings. 

"  No  blown  meat  or  leprous  swine  shall  be  sold,  under  the  pain 
of  forfeiture  the  same  and  forty  shillings. 

"  That  there  be  a  person  appointed  by  the  Mayor  and  Aldermen 
to  be  Clerk  of  the  Market,  who  is  to  take  care  that  the  above  orders 
arc  duly  observed  and  prevent  defaults,  and  set  out  and  appoint  con- 
venient boarths,  stales  and  standings  for  all  persons  that  come  to  the 
market,  shall  not  be  put  in  execution  until  the  week  after  Easter, 
when  the  same  is  to  be  duly  observed  and  kept." 

In  the  repairs  of  this  market-house,  in  1683, 1  find  from  a  report 
that  "  1,500  (feet)  of  inch  oak  plank,  16  feet  (in  length,)  cost  £5  5." 

This  "fitt  market-house"  had  not  been  used  quite  ten  years  when 
Governor  Dongon  ordered  the  removal  of  this  marketrplace;  which 
subject  came  before  the  Council  held  on  the  24th  of  May,  1684: 
"  Mr.  John  Tudor,  bringing  a  message  from  the  Governor,  desiring 
that  the  market  may  be  removed  from  the  place  where  itt  is  now 
kept,  to  the  vacant  ground  before  the  Fort,  and  that  the  authorities 
would  order  the  same  to  be  done  accordingly.''  ^'  That  from  hence- 
forward the  market  for  butchers'  meat  bo  held  in  the  same  place 
(Broadway  Shambles)  according,  they  erecting  their  scales  and  other 
conveniences  at  their  own  charge." 

The  removal  of  this  market-place  from  the  "  Bridge  and  Weigh- 
House"  no  doubt  was  caused  by  the  accumulation  of  business  at  this 
place.  The  laws  had  granted  them  the  privilege  to  hold  market- 
days  every  day  of  the  week ;  this,  and  the  shipping  and  the  receiving 
of  goods,  all  took  place  on  and  around  the  Dock,  Bridge,  and  through 
the  *  Weigh-House,'  and  *  12d.  per  ton  bridge  money'  was  exacted 
on  all  merchandise  exported  or  imported."* 

Although  the  market-place  was  removed,  yet  the  "fitt  market- 
house"  was  not;  but  in  1687  it  was  "Ordered  that  the  market-house 
of  the  city  be  employed  as  a  warehouse  for  goods ;  each  ton  or  cask 
paying  9  pence  for  24  hours,  and  the  Mayor  appoint  a  fit  person  to 
keep  the  same,  who  shall  have  half  of  the  profit  for  his  services." 
Accordingly,  on  the  26th  February  following,  (1688,)  Anthony  De- 
milt  was  ordered  to  "keepe  y^  key  of  y«  market-house  until  the  25th 
day  of  March,"  and  the  allowed  fees,  which  in  addition  "for  every 
half  bar^"  be  collected  "  two  stivers  wampum  for  y®  use  of  y«  city." 

•PiotoreofN.Y. 


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CUSTOM-HOUSE   BRIDGE   MARKET.  75 

At  the  expiration  of  the  term,  he  was  again  appointed  to  this  im- 
portant office  "  until  further  order." 

On  the  16th  of  March,  in  the  year  1689,  the  Common  Council 
agreed  with  Captain  John  Tudor  "for  a  place  to  build  a  shop  in  the 
market'kouae  for  the  term  of  three  years,  for  the  sum  of  forty  shillings 
per  annum."  Then,  on  the  30th  inst.,  "  Oeorge  Brown  hath  hired  a 
lott  for  a  shop  in  the  fnarhet-hotise  for  the  same  time  at  £2  10,  and 
another  lott  was  lett  to  Peter  Panbumge  at  £3,  to  be  paid  quarterly." 

The  Mayor  made  a  report  on  the  24th  April,  1691,  "that  he  hath 
lett  out  the  shop  in  the  marhet'hotcae  to  one  John  Ellison  for  three 
pounds  ten  shillings  per  annum,  to  be  payed  quarterly,  and  he  to  re- 
ceive the  same  att  his  owne  charge,  a  pair  of  hinges  for  the  door, 
onley  accepted."  On  the  18th  of  IJpbruary,  in  the  year  1692,  a  com- 
mittee was  appointed  to  "  lett  it  out,  what  is  to  be  lett  thereoff." 

Next  we  find  it  with  an  additional  name,  from  the  proceedings  on 
the  15th  March,  1694 :  "  The  markei-AmLse  or  store^house  (no  doubt  the 
whole)  at  the  Bridge  was  let  to  John  Elli8on,cittyjoyner,  ^carpen^,^ 
for  the  space  of  five  years,  from  the  first  of  May  next,  for  the  sum 
of  sixteen  pounds  per  annum ;  he  having  permission  to  build  an  ad- 
dition of  ten  feet  in  breadth,  with  chimney — ^part  of  the  market-^houee 
to  be  used  as  a  store-house  for  merchants." 

Ellison's  lease  expired  in  the  year  1699;  he,  however,  on  the 
20th  of  September,  agreed  with  the  Authorities  to  "  put  up  a  house 
of  brick  and  stone,  two  stories  high,  in  the  room  and  on  the  ground ; 
the  old  market-house  stands  to  have  a  lease  of  twenty-one  years;" 
but  I  find  the  inhabitants  enter  a  protest  against  giving  "  the  pos- 
session of  a  lease  to  John  Ellison  for  the  market-house  at  the  *  Cus- 
tom-House  Bridge,'  until  such  time  they  are  heard;"  and  there  ap- 
peared two  parties  who  wished  that  privilege ;  one  to  build  a  market- 
house,  and  the  other  a  place  for  the  meeting  of  merchants. 

The  first  was  before  the  Board  on  the  16th  October  of  that  year, 
"  praying  that  they  have  liberty  to  make  and  erect  a  publick  market- 
house  for  the  ornament  and  benefit  of  y^  Citty,  on  y®  ground  whereon 
j^  old  market-house  stands  on  which  John  Ellison  lives ;  he,  the  said 
John  Ellison,  having  relinquished  his  agreement  with  j^  Citty." 
The  other,  signed  by  some  eighty-three  inhabitants  of  the  South 
Ward,  states,  "  That  whereas  Sir  Edmund  Andross,  Ent.,  late  Gov- 
ernor of  this  province,  did  order  a  certain  building  to  be  erected 
near  the  Bridge  in  this  city,  which  has  since  been  called  the  market" 
house;  and  whereas  your  petitioners  have  been  informed  that  the 
same  was  by  this  Board  to  be  let  out  for  some  term  of  years  to  one 
Mr.  Ellison,  on  condition  to  erect  a  new  building  on  the  same  ground, 
and  pay  as  a  rent  twdve  pounds  a  year  to  the  City: 


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7e  CUSTOM-HOUSE   BRIDGE   MARKET. 

"Your  petitioners  therefore  humbly  pray  that  the  said  agreement 
may  be  quashed,  and  that  the  same  ground  may  be  allowed  to  yoor 
petitioners  for  the  use  of  this  City,  they  offering  to  erect  there  a 
convenient  place  for  the  meeting  of  merchants^  on  their  own  cost  and 
charges;  it  being  a  very  convenient  place  for  the  same,  being  nigh 
the  Custom-House,  and  will  be  of  ornament  to  the  City,  and  also 
pay  ttodve  pounds  a  year  to  the  City,  they  having  the  benefit  of  the 
store*money  of  merchants'  goods  allowed  them,"  &c.  A  committee 
was  ordered  "  to  consult  with  the  inhabitants  of  the  South  Ward 
what  building  they  propose  to  make  on  the  premises,  and  what  yearly 
rent  they  will  pay  for  the  same,  and  make  report  thereof  to  the 
next  Common  Council.'' 

This  report  was  not  made  unt^  the  19th  of  February,  1700,  when 
it  was  "  Ordered,  that  y«  said  market-house  be  granted  to  y«  (South) 
Ward  for  the  terme  of  fifty  years,  they,  the  said  Inhabitants,  in  ten 
years'  time,  erecting  a  publick  building  according  to  the  moddell 
exhibited  to  this  Courte;  they  yielding  the  yearly  rent  of  twelve 
pounds,  and  keeping  and  delivering  the  same  in  good  repair  att 
the  expiration  of  the  said  term  of  fifty  years." 

It  appears,  by  this  order,  the  inhabitants  were  not  immediately 
bound  to  erect  this  public  building,  but  were  allowed  ten  years  to 
do  so ;  and  our  old  friend,  John  Ellison,  a  few  years  after,  turned 
his  attention  to  *' catching  porpoises,"  as  his  petition  sets  forth, 
''  that  he  has  been  at  great  charge  in  inventing  a  method  to  catch 
porpoises,"  and  wishes  encouragement  for  the  same,  which  was  not 
given  him  by  the  Board. 

The  old  marketrhouse  had  been,  many  of  its  former  years,  used  as 
a  '^  store-house  and  shops,"  and  lost  its  reputation  as  a  public  mar- 
ket-place ;  others,  also,  had  been  in  the  mean  time  established ;  the 
inhabitants  around  it  felt  anxious  to  restore  its  trade  back  again, 
and  applied  to  the  authorities  to  assist  them,  who,  on  the  80th  June, 
1701,  ^'Besclved,  That  the  old  market-house  near  the  Castom-House 
Bridge  be  forever  hereafter  appropriated  for  a  publick  {narkct-house, 
for  the  benefit  and  conveniency  of  all  persons  that  should  resort 
thereunto,  in  as  full  and  ample  manner  as  any  other  market-house 
or  market-place  within  this  city  now  is,  or  lawfully  ought  to  be." 

In  1703,  it  appeared  to  have  needed  some  repairs,  as,  on  the  29th 
of  November,  "  ten  pounds  is  appropriated  for  the  covering  of  the 
market-house  by  the  Custom-House  Bridge."  So  it  stood  until  the 
2d  November,  1708,  when  the  sheds  or  "shops"  on  the  sides  had 
become  useless,  and  it  was  "ordered  that  the  inhabitants  have  lib- 
erty to  pull  down  the  boards  about  the  marke^house  by  the  Cus- 
tom-House Bridge,  and  that  Alderman  Thong  dispose  of  the  same.^ 


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BROAD   STREET   MARKET.  77 

He  reported,  on  the  1st  February  following,  "  that  he  had  sold  the 
boards  for  one  pound,  three  shillings  and  sixpence;  whereof  he  ex- 
pended for  thirty-four  loads  of  sand,  and  for  a  laborer  for  mending 
the  street  near  the  Custom-House,  eighteen  shillings  and  one  penny 
half-penny/' 

It  then  rested  quietly  until  the  16th  of  November,  1720,  when  it 
was  presented  as  a  public  nuisance,  and  the  Common  Council  gave 
permission  to  the  inhabitants,  or  rather  to  "  have  liberty  to  remove 
the  old  market-house  near  the  Custom-House  to  a  more  convenient 
place  near  the  water-side,  at  their  own  cost,  provided  they  do  the 
same  within  ten  days;  if  not,  the  said  marketrhouse  will  be  pulled 
down,  according  to  an  order  of  the  Supreme  Court."  Thus  was 
disposed  of  the  old  market-house,  which  I  have  designated  "  the 
Cudom-Houae  Bridge  Market.^' 


BROAD   STREET  MARKET. 

1691.  I  HAVE  designated  the  first  market-house  built  in  Broad 
Street  with  the  above  title,  there  having  been  several  market-houses 
and  market-places  establidied  at  various  intervals  in  that  street. 

The  first  notice  we  have  of  this  market-place  is  found  in  the  pro- 
ceedings of  the  Common  Council,  July  9,  1691,  in  which  ''  Captain 
William  Merritt,  Mr.  Johannes  Kipp,  Captain  Brandt  Schuyler,  and 
Mr.  Tennis  de  Kay  are  appointed  a  Committee  to  build  a  market- 
house  att  the  end  of  Heere-graft  (Broad)  Street,  for  all  but  Butch- 
ers' meat."  This  market-house  was  finished,  as  is  shown  from  the 
following  instructions,  given  to  a  committee,  on  the  18th  of  Febru- 
ary, 1692,  ''for  the  letting  the  new  Marke^House  over  against 
Anthony  Farmer's,  which  said  new  market-house  is  allowed  to  be 
made  shambles,  (HaUa/or  butchers^  mecUJ  or  any  otherwise." 

"Anthony  Farmer's"  appears  to  have  been  located  aver  or  on  the 
east  side  of  the  Heere-Grafb,  (canal  in  Broad  Street,)  near  the 
present  Water  Street,  near  what  was  then  known  as  the  ''Little 
Bridge." 

The  Laws  and  Ordinances  in  1702  say,  "That  there  be  three 
market-days,  one  whereof  be  at  the  'Little  Bridge'  by  the  dock." 

In  the  month  of  March,  1704,  "Two  pairs  of  staifs  be  made  in 
the  Dock  on  each  side  of  the  'Little  Bridge;'"  "and  that  two 
posts  be  put  up  in  the  'market-house'  by  the  Great  Bridge,  ('  Cu&^ 


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78  BROAD    STREET    MARKET. 

tom-House  Bridge  Market,^)  in  order  to  keep  out  the  cows,"  Then, 
in  the  month  of  June,  1705,  it  was  ordered  that  '*the  street  front- 
ing the  Dock,  between  the  '  Great  and  Little  Bridges/  the  south  end 
of  Broad  Street  to  the  Little  Bridge,  on  both  sides  of  the  (canal) 
way,"  should  be  paved. 

At  this  early  period,  just  about  this  market-house  appeared 
rather  a  favorite  place  for  the  merchants  and  traders;  it  being  so 
nearly  located  to  the  "  Great  Bridge,"  Dock,  and  Custom-House  on 
the  one  side,  where  all  goods  of  every  character  were  exported 
and  imported  for  the  city ;  and  on  the  other  side,  the  '*  Coenties 
Slip  (Fish J  Market"  and  the  old  City  Hall,  which  had  now  been 
given  up  by  the  authorities,  and  sold,  a  few  years  previous,  (1699,) 
to  one  John  Rodman,  a  merchant,  for  the  sum  of  £920 ;  and  another 
at  the  head  of  this  (Broad)  street,  in  Wall  Street,  had  been  erected 
in  the  year  1700. 

These  attractions  gave  an  idea  to  a  prominent  individual,  named 
Cornelius  Sebring,  who  lived  opposite,  on  the  Long  Island  shore,  to 
petition  to  the  Governor,  on  the  23d  January,  1708,  for  an  addi- 
tional ferry.  He  stated,  he  "stands  possessed  of  a  certain  farm  on 
the  Island  of  Nassau,  directly  over  against  the  centre  of  the  City 
of  New  York,  being  a  most  fit  and  convenient  place  for  beiug  a 
ferry  to  and  from  the  said  city;"  "and  can  be  of  no  hurt  or  dam- 
mage  to  the  (M  ferry,  it  being  not  so  convenient  for  that  ferry  to 
send  their  boats  to  the  south  end  and  centre  of  the  city,  where  he 
proposes  to  send  his."  "To  be  limited  on  the  Island  of  Nassau  on 
the  one  side  of  the  old  ferry,  and  on  the  other  side  by  the  Red 
Hook ;  and  on  the  side  of  New  York  between  the  (Old)  Slip,  at 
Captain  Theobald's,  unto  the  *  Great  Bridge,'  for  the  loading  and 
landing  of  all  persons,  goods,  wares,  and  merchandise,  except  cattle, 
to  be  landed  at  or  near  the  alaughter-howsea ;  (nevertheless,  not  ex- 
cluding the  old  ferry-boat  from  the  places  aforesaid.") 

The  Corporation  remonstrate  against  the  granting  of  this  peti- 
tion, and  state  that  this  ferry  "hath  been  commonly  esteemed  A  re- 
puted for  seaventy  years  past  to  extend  from  a  heap  of  Rock  Stones 
gathered  together  on  a  small  wharfe  or  landing  Bridge  near  the 
Perry-House  on  the  said  Island."  "That  some  private  persons,  for 
their  own  Lucre  and  gain,  have  solicited  your  Excellency  for  an- 
other Ferry  on  the  said  Island  fronting  to  this  City,  which,  if 
Granted,  would  be  of  great  damage  to  this  Corporation,  and  all  tlie 
Inhabitants  thereof."  "And  also,  that  your  Excellency  would  be 
further  pleased  to  order  unto  the  petitioners  &  their  successors  her 
Migesty's  Grant  of  Confirmation  for  the  said  Ferry  on  both  sides 
of  the  said  River,  with  power  to  Establish  one  or  more  Ferrys,  if 


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BROAD   STREET   MARKET.  79 

there  shall  be  occasion,  Ac."*    Their  remonstrance  was  granted, 
which  denied  the  petition  of  Mr.  Sebring. 

This  "old  ferry,"  (says  Mr.  Valentine,)  "from  the  earliest  settle- 
ment, and  for  many  years  afterwards,  was  from  the  present  landing 
on  the  Brooklyn  side,  at  Fulton  Ferry,  to  the  nearest  point  on  this 
island^  which  was  at  the  present  Peck  Slip." 

The  Records  inform  m  that  on  the  28th  of  February,  1683,  "Mr. 
William  Merritt  beeing  sent  ffor,  and  discoursed  about  the  fferry  too 
Long  Island ;  offered,  iff  he  might  have  the  same  ffor  twenty  years, 
too  give  twenty  pound  pr  annum,  and  to  mayke  houses  on  each  syde, 
and  have  two  Boats  ffor  cattle  and  horses,  and  two  Boats  ffor  pas- 
sengers ;  and  too  carry  cattle  and  horses  att  6  sciple  p^  head,  men  at 
1  sciple,  and  come  att  1  sciple  p^  bagg;  wheat  3  sciples." 

A  committee  was  appointed  "  too  drawe  upp  suitable  orders  ffor 
the  future  management  and  accomodacon  thereof,  and  the  rates 
and  prises,  and  too  lett  the  sayme  ffor  terms  off  years,  by  advise  and 
eonsente  off  the  Mayor,  reservinge  a  Rente  too  be  annually  payde  bye 
quarterly  payments  ffor  the  publique  use  off  the  Citty." 

It  appears,  however,  that  no  regular  ferry-house  and  other  neces- 
sary accommodations  had  been  prepared  until  the  year  1698,  when 
the  conditions  were  made  known  in  again  farming  or  leasing  it  for 
a  period  of  five  years,  beginning  from  the  25th  of  March  of  the  above 
year,  (1698.) 

These  conditions  read  in  the  third  section :  "  That  y«  said  farmer 
shall  provide  and  maintain  two  great  Boats  or  Scows  for  y«  carry- 
ing and  transporting  of  cattle,  corne,  &c. ;  and  two  small  Boats  suf- 
ficient for  y*^  carrying  of  passengers,  and  that  the  great  Boats  shall 
be  kept  one  on  each  side  of  the  river,  Ac. ;  the  small  Boats  y^  like- 
wise constantly  going  to  and  fro,  but  not  both  to  remaine  on  the 
same  side  of  y^  River  att  any  time,  and  also  to  keep  good  and  able 
men  to  Row  in  the  said  Boats,  who  shall  give  their  constant  attend- 
ance, and  be  ready  att  all  times  according  to  form  and  custom." 

They  shall  "  keep  and  maintain  one  sufficient  pound  for  security 
of  cattle  to  be  transported  to  and  from  the  Citty  of  New  York,  and 
when  delivered  at  y^  Ferry  to  take  charge  thereof,  and  to  find  all 
Roapes  &  other  necessaries."  Section  5th  says:  "That  the  Mayor, 
Ac.,  within  the  first  year  of  y«  said  lease,  shall  cause  to  be  erected 
and  built  at  y«  Ferry,  on  Nassau  Island,  a  good  sufficient  house  of 
stone  and  brick,  of  two  stories  high,  fourty  fdbt  in  length,  and  twenty- 
four  foot  in  breadth,  for  y«  accommodation  &  conveniency  of  y« 
p<>rsons  that  farmeth  y«  said  Ferry.  And  the  farmer  to  keep  it  a 
Public  House  of  entertainment." 

•  Doc  Hist  of  N.  Y.,  voL  !IL,  p.  421 


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80  BROAD  STREET*  MARKET. 

The  ferriage  rates  were  fixed  as  follows:  "Every  single  person 
to  pay  for  going  over  eight  stivers  in  wampnm,  or  a  silver  two- 
pence. Each  person  in  company  fewer  (4)  stivers  in  wampnm,  or  a 
silver  penny — if  after  sonsett,  double  ferriage.  Each  horse  or  beast 
single,  one  shilling;  in  company,  nine-pence.  Each  colt  or  calfe, 
three-pence.  Each  hog,  eight  stivers  in  wampum,  or  a  silver  two- 
pence.   Each  sheep,  four  stivers  wampum,  or  a  silver  penny/'  &^. 

This  ferry  was  ordered  to  be  sold  or  "  demised  to  y^  fairest  bidder.^ 

From  the  above  we  perceive  the  cattle  that  crossed  the  ferry  were 
landed  at  or  near  the  "  Slaughter-Houses,"  (previously  noticed,)  then 
located  above  Wall  Street  on  the  East  River  shore ;  as  shown  in  a 
survey  made  of  the  north  side  of  Wall  Street  in  1686,  they  "  Have 
laid  out  y«  northeast  side, of  Wall  Street,  beginning  at  y^  wester- 
most  corner  of  y^  Butchers' Pen,"  the  yard  belonging  to  the  Slaughter- 
Houses;  and  tiiey  are  also  so  put  down  on  the  Bev.  John  Miller's 
plan  of  New  York,  printed  in  1695. 

This  "  public  institution,"  or  the  slaughtering  part,  was  ordered,  on 
the  23d  June,  1696,  to  be  removed,  and  "  no  butcher  or  other  person 
whatsoever  doe  slaughter  any  cattle  of  any  kind,  after  y«  seventh 
day  of  July  next."  Captain  Ebenezer  Willson  having  previously 
{May  11)  petitioned  "for  a  grant  for  some  land  from  the  street  to 
low-water  mark  on  y®  west  side  of  y®  house  of  Thomas  Hooks  for 
j^  building  of  a  Slaughter-House,"  which  was  granted  to  him  for 
"  thirty  years,  and  that  y«  surveyors  lay  out  y«  same.**  This  loca- 
tion appears  to  have  been  "  fronting  to  the  East  River  at  the  east 
end  of  Queen  {Pearl)  Street,"  near  the  present  Peck  Slip.  This  fact, 
however,  is  more  fully  shown  from  the  report  on  the  petition  of  John 
Kelly,  before  the  Common  Council,  October  11, 1720,  in  which  he 
states: 

'*  That  the  petitioner  hath  lately  purchased  from  Richard  Sarkett 
three  water  lotts  contiguous,  seventy-four  foot  wide,  convenient  for 
the  present  for  the  situacon  of  a  Slaughter-House  for  Cattle.  That 
the  places  where  the  two  slaughter-houses  of  this  City  are  now  sit- 
uated, by  the  increase  of  buildings  &  the  number  of  inhabitants,  are 
not  only  become  offensive  to  the  inhabitants,  but  dangerous  to  them 
and  their  children,  being  exposed  often  to  the  danger  of  mad  oxen 
and  doggs. 

''  That  the  three  lotts  of  this  petitioner  are  likewise  convenient  for 
the  landing  of  Black  Cattle  by  the  Ferryman  from  the  Island  of 
Nassau,  and  that  the  petitioner  is  willing,  at  his  own  private  charge, 
to  erect  and  build  upon  his  said  lotts  such  convenient  Sloughter- 
House  as  may  serve  all  the  Butchers  of  this  Corporation,  provided 
he  may  have  a  grant  for  the  same  for  a  reasonable  term  of  years 


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BROAD    STREET    MARKET.  81 

Without  increasing  of  the  ffees."  This  was  referred  to  a  Committee 
consisting  of  Aldermen  Andrew  Marschalk,  Jacobus  Kip,  John 
Roosevelt,  John  Cruger,  and  Philip  Gortlandt,  who  reported  on  the 
following  3d  December,  *'  That  wee  find  the  said  allegations  to  be 
tme,  and  are  humbly  of  opinion  that  the  present  Sloughter-Houses 
fronting  the  East  River  at  the  east  end  of  Queen  (Pearl)  Street  in 
the  East  Ward  of  this  City,  now  or  late  belonging  to  the  Widdow 
Cortlandt  and  Johannes  Beekman,  are  becom  a  publick  nuisance, 
and  ought  in  a  short  time  to  be  removed,  in  order  more  convenient 
and  ornamental  buildings  may  be  erected  there,  and  in  that  neigh- 
borhood, which  now  are  retarded  by  occasion  of  the  said  Sloughter- 
Houses. 

"  We  are  also  humbly  of  opinion  that  the  place  proposed  by  the 
petitioner,  John  Kelly,  for  the  erecting  Public  Sloughter-Houses  and 
Penn  upon  the  East  River  of  this  City,  a  little  to  the  westward  of 
the  now  dwelling-house  of  Mr.  John  Deane  in  the  said  East  Ward, 
is  a  convenient  place  for  that  use  and  service,  being  the  freehold  of 
the  said  John  Kelly,  and  that  the  petitioner  ought  to  have  a  grant 
to  him,  his  heirs,  executors,  and  administrators,  for  the  erecting  of 
t/iree  or  more  substantial  and  convenient  Publick  Sloughter-Houses 
at  the  place  aforesaid,  at  his  own  proper  cost,  charge  and  expense, 
at  which  all  persons  whatsoever  shall  and  may  sloughter  their  neat 
cattle,  paying  to  the  said  John  Kelly  or  his  assigns  one  shilling  or 
the  tongue  of  each  neat  cattle  so  sloughtered  for  the  use  of  the  said 
Sloughter-Houses  and  Penn  &  convenience  for  sloughtering  the  same 
in  full  of  all  fees,  dues,  and  demands  for  so  doing.'' 

They  further  say,  that  the  said  grant  "  ought  to  be  for  the  term  of 
twenty-one  years;"  also  "to  be  restrained  from  farming"  the  same 
"  to  any  butcher  whatsoever  during  this  term ;"  also  "  to  inclose  a  suffi- 
cient quantity  of  ground  for  a  publick  Penn  or  Pinfold,  sufficient  to 
hold  and  secure  all  neat  cattle  that  shall  or  may  be  brought  there- 
unto in  order  to  be  sloughtered  at  the  said  Sloughter-Houses,  and 
shall  and  will  supply,  furnish  &  provide  all  necessary  ropes,  trees,  and 
tackle  suitable  and  convenient  for  the  well  and  easy  sloughtering  and 
hanging  up  all  cattle ;"  also  to  keep  all  "  in  good  and  sufficient  re- 
pair, plight,  and  condition — well  and  sufficiently  scoured  &  claused.'* 

To  have  them  all  built  and  regulated  "  on  or  before  the  first  day 
of  October  next ;"  "  the  same  shall  be  deemed  &  esteemed  the  Pub- 
lick Sloughter-House  of  the  said  City  of  New  York,  &  that  no  other 
Sloughter-Houses  from  thence  forward  shall  be  built  &  erected  on 
the  East  River  during  the  said  term." 

Perhaps  these  few  facts  in  relation  to  the  "Sloughter-Houses"  of 
the  olden  time  will  not  be  so  acceptable  to  the  reader  as  some  more 
Vol.  I.— 6 


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82  BROAD  STREET   MARKET. 

interesting  subjects.  My  answer  is,  they  were  public  institations — 
built  and  conducted  for  more  than  a  century  and  a  half  by  some  of 
the  first  men  of  that  day,  sereral  of  whom  have  given  their  names 
to  certain  public  streets,  as  Cortlandt,  Bcekman,  Bayard,  Ac. ;  and 
withal,  they  are  noticed  or  marked  down  on  many  of  the  early  maps 
of  the  City  in  the  most  prominent  form ;  and  if  they  are  an  eye-sore 
or  an  evil,  they  are  a  necessary  one,  where  people  will  be  carnivorous. 

A  complaint  was  made  against  the  ferry-master  five  years  after, 
(1726,)  through  a  petition,  by  a  butcher  named  William  Weblin,  in 
which  he  states,  "  That  he  has  received  many  abuses  of  late  firom 
James  Harding,  the  ferryman,  not  only  by  abusive  words,  but  several 
times  by  his  carelessness  has  had  his  creatures  destroyed  and  killed 
in  bringing  from  the  ferry  to  New  York ;  the  particulars  of  which 
woulil  be  too  tedious  to  trouble  this  Honorable  Court  with  all,  and 
therefore  your  petitioner  will  confine  himself  to  what  has  been  trans- 
acted by  said  Mr.  Harding,  since  the  26th  of  this  instant  month  of 
July,  on  which  day,  about  noon,  your  petitioner  had  ttvo  cattle  brought 
to  the  ferry,  and  put  into  the  common  pen  or  yard  where  cattle  al- 
ways use  to  be  put,  in  order  to  be  brought  over  to  the  Slaughter- 
House  in  New  York ;  on  which  day,  in  the  afternoon,  your  petitioner 
went  over  to  said  Harding,  and  treated  him  handsomely,  and  pray^ 
him  to  bring  said  two  cattle  over  by  the  first  opportunity,  which  be 
said  should  be  done ;  but  said  cattle  not  beijug  brought  over  accord- 
ing to  expectation,  onFryday,  the  28th  instant,  your  petitioner  went 
over  again,  to  know  what  was  the  reason  the  said  cattle  were  not 
brought  over  in  four  high  waters,  at  a  time  of  calm  good  weather : 
and  when  your  petitioner  came,  the  said  Harding  told  him  he  could 
not  carry  them  now,  nor  could  he  tell  when  they  could  be  carried 
over,  so  that  your  petitioner  was  forced  to  turn  said  cattle  into  a 
pasture  after  they  had  stood  starving  in  a  pen  for  the  space  of  four 
high  tydea,  during  which  time  your  petitioner  had  no  beef  for  the 
market  but  what  he  borrowed ;  and  when  your  petitioner  expostu- 
lated with  this  ferryman  about  his  neglect  herein,  his  answer  was, 
that  Jeremiah  Calcutt  was  dead,  and  he  would  make  all  the  butchers 
in  New  York  truclde  to  him  before  Christmas ;  nor  would  he  bring 
said  cattle  over,  unless  your  petitioner  would  come  over  and  help 
to  load  them. 

"As  your  petitioner  has  lived  in  this  city  and  followed  the  trade 
of  a  butcher  for  tiie  term  of  about  nine  years,  during  which  time  the 
ferrymen  have  always  thought  it  their  duty  to  load  and  bring  over 
the  cattle  that  have  come  to  the  ferry  for  the  butchers.  And  why 
the  butchers  shall  be  forced  to  goe  and  load  the  cattle  themselves, 
now  Jeremiah  Calcutt  is  dead,  more  than  they  did  before,  your  pe- 


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BROAD   STREET    MARKET.  83 

titioner  cannot  perceive,  nor  will  the  circumstances  of  the  trade  al- 
low your  petitioner  to  hire  hands  and  goe  over  to  load  the  cattle 
when  they  come  to  the  ferry.  He  wishes  the  Hon.  Court  to  order 
the  said  ferryman  to  do  his  duty — as  has  always  been  the  practice 
of  the  said  ferry." 

Two  years  after  the  butchers  and  other  keepers  of  dogs  were  com- 
plained of  for  allowing  their  dogs  to  run  loose  about  the  city,  and 
the  authorities  on  the  17th  of  March  notice  it  in  the  following  man- 
ner:  "  Whereas  the  butchers  and  other  inhabitants  of  this  city  super- 
abound  in  a  very  great  number  of  mischievous  mastiffs,  bull-dogs, 
and  other  useless  dogs,  who  not  only  run  at  coaches,  horses,  chaises, 
and  cattle  in  the  daytime,  whereby  much  mischief  has  ensued,  but  in 
the  nigh^timc  are  left  in  the  streets  of  this  city,  and  frequently  bite, 
tear,  and  kill  several  cows  and  render  the  passage  of  the  inhabitants 
of  this  city  upon  their  lawful  occasions  very  dangerous  in  the  night- 
time through  the  streets  thereof,  by  attacking  and  flying  at  them,  and 
are  become  a  publick  nuisance  and  grievance,"  Ac. 

The  butchers  in  general,  from  my  first  recollections,  were  noto- 
rious for  keeping  bull-dogs,  and  no  doubt  at  this  very  early  period 
they  were  used  to  assist  in  catching  runaways  or  dangerous  animals, 
which  had  become  so  from  fright  or  other  causes.  Cattle  raised  on 
large  ranges,  where  they  almost  run  wild,  are  apt  to  be  dangerous, 
and  if  penned  into  a  small  yard  singly  or  almost  alone,  they  will 
not  allow  any  person  to  approach  them,  but  turn  and  charge  you  at 
a  full  run.  Such  animals,  when  about  to  be  haltered  in  olckn  time, 
were  worried  with  bull-dogs,  who  seized  them  by  the  nose  with  a 
vice»like  grip  of  their  strong  jaws,  and  by  a  muscular  twist  of  the 
body,  threw  the  animals  or  held  them  until  they  could  be  haltered. 

Some  stubborn  animals  would  not  step  after  being  haltered,  but 
lay  down ;  then  the  bull-dog  would  soon  arouse  them,  so  that  they 
can  be  pulled  in.  It  is,  however,  many  years  since  butchers  have 
used  bull-dogs  for  this  purpose,  although  they  were  kept  by  some  of 
the  buU4ies,  when  it  was  the  fashion  for  bull-baiting.  The  few  which 
are  now  kept  here  are  by  sporting  characters  of  the  dog-fighting  and 
rat-killing  fanciers. 

In  the  month  of  September,  1710,  a  conmiittee  was  appointed  to 
*"  cause  the  wall  under  the  market-house  at  the  south  end  of  Broad 
Street,  near  the  Dock,  to  be  repaired."  We  then  pass  on  to  the 
Ist  of  June,  1714,  when  it  was  "Ordered,  that  the  market-house  by 
the  Dock,  at  the  south  end  of  the  Broad  Street,  be  repaired;" 
which  I  find,  from  records  in  the  Comptroller's  office,  cost  £1  lOs. 
Again,  in  December,  1719,  a  committee  was  ordered  to  "view  the 
wall  fronting  the  Dock  which  supports  the  Market^House  at  the 


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g4  BROAD    STREET   MARKET. 

south  end  of  Broad  Street,  and  take  care  that  the  same  be  put  into 
some  tolerable  repairs,  to  preserve  itt  from  falling  this  winter,  in 
order  it  be  better  repaired  in  the  spring;"  which  no  doubt  was 
done. 

The  next  year  the  laws  ordained  "what  places  to  be  public  mar- 
kets;" among  which  were  "the  market-places  at  the  Cheat  and 
Little  Bridges  ;^^  that  is,  the  one  at  the  Great  Bridge  was  the  "Cus- 
tom-Housc  Bridge  Market,"  and  the  one  at  the  Little  Bridge  the 
"Broad  Street  Market."  Then  also,  in  the  boundaries  of  the  South 
Ward,  from  the  Charter,  dated  1723,  it  includes  "the  market-house 
at  the  south  end  of  the  said  {Broad)  street." 

Now  let  us  look  at  the  plan  of  New  York,  surveyed  by  James 
Lyne,  in  1729.  He  places  a  building  at  the  foot  of  Broad  Street, 
which  he  calls  Exchange;  the  laws,  however,  the  next  year  call  it 
"Market  by  the  Long  Bridge." 

This  Long  Bridge  was  formerly  the  Little  Bridge,  which  at  this 
period  had  been  widened  and  extended. 

We  here  turn  aside  to  notice  a  great  rejoicing,  which  ended  with 
great  sorrow  and  death  to  several  prominent  citizens.  It  was  a 
great  fashion  in  "olden  times,"  on  great  occasions — such  as  victo- 
ries, birth-days  of  distinguished  men,  or  the  finishing  of  some  im- 
portant edifice  or  great  work — to  have  an  ox  roasted  whole,  with 
barrels  of  liquor  furnished  to  the  inhabitants.  From  "Zenger's" 
Weekly  Journal,  of  the  21st  July,  1735,  we  learn  that  "on  Wednes- 
day last  His  Excellency,  William  Cosby,  Esq.,  our  Governor,  caused 
an  ox  to  be  roasted  whole  on  the  new  Battery,  where  he  was  at- 
tended by  several  gentlemen  of  distinction ;  the  day  was  spent 
with  firing  and  drinking  of  the  loyal  healths  by  a  great  many  peo- 
ple, as  is  usual  on  such  occasions.  But  the  day  ended  with  more 
real  and  sudden  sorrow  than  we  have  known  in  this  city  within 
twenty-four  years  last  past.  For  the  last  piece  (cannon)  unfortu- 
nately burst,  and  wounded  three  persons  mortally,  viz.,  John  Hen- 
drick  Lymes,  Esq.,  SheriflF  of  the  City  of  New  York ;  a  fragment 
of  the  piece  struck  on  the  groin  and  thighs,  and  bruised  him  that 
he  died  within  a  few  hours."  One  of  the  others  was  "  Catharine 
Courtlandt,  the  only  daughter  of  Philip  Courtlandt,  Esq.,  one  of 
His  Majesty's  Council  for  this  province;  she  had  her  skull  frac- 
tured, so  that  she  died  within  a  few  minutes  after  she  received  the 
hurt.    She  was  about  nine  years  of  age." 

This  market-house,  for  many  of  its  latter  years,  was  used  princi- 
pally as  a  country  market,  and  when  vacant,  the  merchants  took 
possession  of  it,  where  they  transacted  their  selling,  trading,  or 
exchanging.    Near  by  was  the  "Long  Bridge,"  which  had  been 


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OLD   SLIP   MARKET.  85 

used  by  them  as  a  place  of  meeting  for  about  seventy  years,  and 
was  first  established  by  Governor  Lovelace,  in  1669,  in  order  that 
merchants  should  meet  "near  the  Bridge"  (Long  Bridge)  on  every 
Friday,  between  the  hours  of  eleven  and  twelve  o'clock ;  and  the 
Mayor  was  ordered  "to  have  the  bell  rung  to  congregate,  and  again 
to  disperse;"  and  also  "to  take  care  that  they  be  not  disturbed" 
while  in  session. 

This  market-house  was  not  noticed  in  the  laws  of  1737  as  a  pub- 
lic market-place;  but  the  "  Oazette"  of  July  24,  1738,  refers  to  it  in 
an  advertisement  for  the  sale  of  property  at  Harlaem,  as  follows: 
"On  Saturday,  the  2d  of  September  next,  at  ten  o'clock  in  the 
morning,  in  the  Exchange  Market-House,  near  the  *Long  Bridge,' 
will  be  exposed  to  sale,  by  publick  vendue,  the  plantation  of  the 
late  Captain  Thomas  Coddrington,  containing  about  thirty  acres  of 
land,  besides  two  out-lots  of  about  eight  acres;"  "all  in  the  bounds 
of  Harlaem,  in  the  outward  of  the  City  of  New  York." 

Four  years  after,  David  Grim,  on  his  map,  marks  it  down  with 
the  name  I  have  adopted  for  it,  viz.,  "Broad  Street  Market."  Two 
years  later,  an  excellent  old  side-view  map,  or  the  "South  Prospect 
View  of  Y^  flourishing  City  of  New  York,"  printed  in  London, 
1746,  now  in  the  possession  of  the  "Society  Library,"  shows  this 
markd'housej  directly  at  the  foot  of  Broad  Street,  but  no  reference 
is  given  to  it.  A  mistake,  however,  is  made,  by  noticing  the  "Meal 
or  Wall  Street  Market-House"  as  the  Exchange,  (No.  15.)  The 
"Old  Exchange"  in  Broad  Street  was  not  built,  or  commenced, 
mitil  the  year  1752;  and  the  intention,  no  doubt,  was  to  represent 
this  old  "&oad  Street  Market"  as  Lyne  did,  when  he  called  it 
"the  Exchange,"  in  1729. 

I  find  no  further  reference  to  it ;  and  as  it  had  stood  more  than 
fifty  years,  I  am  inclined  to  think  that  about  the  period  of  1746  it 
was  taken  down. 


"OLD   SLIP   MARKET." 

1691.  Among  the  proceedings  which  took  place  before  the  "Court," 
on  the  15th  of  October,  1691,  was  that  of  designating  where  "  Flesh- 
Meat"  shall  be  sold.  The  "Court"  ordered  "that  there  be  two 
market-places  for  Flesh-Meat:  the  one  in  the  Broadway  over  against 
the  Ffort;  the  other  under  the  Trees  by  the  Slipp." 

The  first  I  have  noticed  as  the  "  Broadway  Shambles,"  and  the 


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86  OLD   SLIP   MABKBT. 

other  I  will  proceed  first  to  locate.  This  "  Slipp*'  is  marked  down 
on  an  old  map  as  being  near  the  present  lower  end  of  Hanover 
Square  and  Old  Slip,  where  no  doubt  at  that  time  stood  several 
large  shady  trees,  under  which  the  country  people  coming  from  the 
ferry  from  Brooklyn,  with  their  productions,  were  wont  to  stop  and 
rest,  sheltered  from  the  son.  They  were  here  met  by  the  purchasing 
Burghers,  and  it  soon  became  a  market-place  recognized  by  the  aa- 
thorities  in  the  above  "  order." 

The  "Burger's"  or  "Slip  Battery  of  Ten  Guns,"  and  also  the 
Burger's  Path,  was  near  this  spot,  where  the  first  Slip  was  made,  or 
noticed  as  such,  gave  it  the  name  of  Old  Slip — ^it  being  the  oldest 
Slip. 

This  additional  "Flesh-Market"  was  ordered  no  doubt  in  conse* 
quence  of  the  rapid  growth  of  this  part  of  the  city  for  several  years 
previous,  as  this  would  appear  to  have  been  a  reasonable  supposi- 
tion from  the  many  improvements  suggested  by  the  authorities.  One 
of  which  was  the  "  ordering  all  the  lotts  from  Burger's  Path  to  the 
foot  of  the  Hill,  by  Alderman  Beekmans,  (Beekman  Street,)  be  ex- 
posed to  sale ;"  and  on  the  following  6th  of  December  it  was  "  orders 
ed  that  the  lotts  lying  between  Burger's  Path  and  the  Block-House 
(  Wall  Street)  be  laid  out  into  thirteen  lotts,  the  first  lott  next  to 
the  Slipp  to  y«  (he)  fifty  foot  in  breadth,  and  the  other  twelve  to 
ye  (be)  each  forty-two  foot."  These  were  all  sold,  and  many  of 
them  were  soon  built  upon,  as  well  as  many  others  which  formerly 
belonged  to  the  Government. 

The  rapid  progress  of  the  city  was,  however,  checked  for  a  period 
by  what  was  then  called  the  "  Bread  Famine."  This  took  place  in 
the  year  1696,  when  the  citizens,  in  the  month  of  October,  appealed 
to  the  authorities  to  assist  them,  in  the  following  language:  "  Upon 
complaint  of  the  inhabitants  &  poor  of  this  city,  that  there  is  no 
bread  to  be  bought  to  supply  their  wants,  soe  that  they  cannot  subsist 
unless  some  speedy  method  be  taken  to  furnish  the  same;  and  the 
bakers  being  summoned  before  this  Board,  doe  complain  that  they 
have  no  come,  neither  can  gett  any  to  purchase  att  a  reasonable 
rate,  whereby  to  occupy  their  trade  in  order  to  supply  the  inhab- 
itants of  this  citty  with  bread  as  aforesaid.  It  is  therefore  ordered 
that  ye  Aldermen  and  Assistants  of  each  respective  Ward  within 
this  Citty  doe  goe  through  their  several  Wards  &  make  dilligent 
search  and  enquiry  of  what  quantities  oifiower,  wheat,  and  bread  are 
in  the  same  Ward,  and  make  return  thereof  on  Munday  next  att  two 
of  ye  clock  in  the  afternoon,  in  order  that  efifectual  care  be  taken  for 
to  supply  the  inhabitants  with  bread." 

At  their  next  meeting  (October  23d)  it  was  ordered  that  a  corn- 


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OLD   SLIP   MARKET.  87 

mittee  "  joyn  the  Recorder  to  consult  of  Bach  proper  methods  as  may 
be  most  effectual  for  the  caosing  oorm  to  be  brought  to  this  citty  for 
the  releif  of  the  inhabitants." 

On  the  17th  of  November  following,  the  Mayor  reported  to  the 
Board,  *'  that  the  inhabitants  have  made  daily  complaints  for  the 
want  of  bread.  That  the  Aldermen  had  made  strict  enquiry  at 
every  house  of  what  store  of  oonm  they  had  at  that  time ;  there  did 
not  exceed  the  quantity  oiseven  hundred  bushels;  upon  which  it  was 
taken  into  consideration  what  number  of  inhabitants  was  within  this 
dtty,  and  what  might  be  needful  for  their  daily  subsistense  with 
bread.  Whereupon  itt  was  computed  that  there  was  about  six  ihon- 
sand  sovls  within  this  citty,  and  that  stock  of  come  would  not  be 
sufficient  for  a  week's  maintenance." 

^  Thereupon  this  Board  fell  into  consideration  of  what  should  be 
the  cause  of  soe  great  a  scarcity,  when  lately  there  had  been  soe 
plentiful  a  harvest,  and  did  finde  that  the  true  and  only  cause  did 
proceed  from  y«  liberty  &  latitude  that  every  planter  had  lately  taken 
of  making  his  house  or  farme  a  markett  for  wheat,  or  converting  the 
same  into  flower  by  bolting  of  tit,  and  that  under  pretense  of  a  privi* 
ledge  they  conceive  they  had  obtained  by  virtue  of  a  law  made  in 
Qen^  Assembly."  A  committee  was  appointed  to  take  measures  to 
have  this  law  repealed,  and  they  were  successful  with  what  was  then 
called  the  '*  Bolting  Act." 

This  market-place  soon  became  a  successful  one,  visited  by  many 
country  people,  and  butchers  who  cut  up  and  sold  "flesh-meat," 
which  no  doubt  afterwards  gave  it  the  name  of  the  "  Great  Flesh 
Market."  Prior  to  the  erection  of  a  marke^hou&e,  they  protected 
themselves  from  the  stormy  weather  under  their  several  temporary 
sheds  and  tents  until  the  prosperity  and  wants  of  the  "'  inhabitants 
of  the  neighborhood  of  Burger^s  Path  asked  leave  to  erect  a  market- 
house  at  their  own  charge."  This  took  place  on  the  8th  of  July, 
1701,  when  the  Board  ordered  that  they  have  liberty  to  erect  such  a 
bouse  ^*  on  the  vacant  lotts  of  ground  fronting  the  houses  of  Leonard 
Haygen,  and  that  late  of  Jacob  Teller,  for  the  conveniency  and 
accommodation  of  the  public." 

A  statement  was  made  showing  the  increase  of  cattle,  and  tho^e 
that  were  killed  for  the  use  of  the  city,  in  several  of  the  previous 
years.  The  proceedings  of  the  16th  of  July,  1698,  show  "A  con- 
fiiderable  increase  of  stock  of  cattle,  and  sould  att  double  y<^  price  of 
what  they  were  formerly;  and  for  instance,  about  fourteen  years 
ago,  (1684,)  there  was  not  dbove/our  hundred  neai  cattle  killed  for 
the  service  of  the  inhabitants  of  this  citty,  and  now  near  three  thou- 
sand head,  besides  sheep  and  other  small  cattle,  which  fully  demon* 
strates  the  increase  of  tiie  trade." 


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gg  OLD   SLIP   MARKET. 

The  introduction  of  a  landing-place  for  the  ferrj-boats  was  also 
established  here ;  it  was,  however,  chiefly  for  the  landing  of  flour  at 
certain  tides.  The  lessee  of  the  regular  ferry,  Dirck  Benson,  had 
got  behind  with  his  payments  to  the  Corporation,  who  sued  him,  but 
they  afterwards  proposed  terms  of  settlement,  (in  the  Coort  held 
January  27,  1703,)  by  abating  "  £30  per  annum,  for  the  remaining 
term  of  the  lease,"  if  he  would  "  land  all  flower  brought  over  to  the 
city  in  the  ferry-boats  att  the  Slip  att  Burger^s  Path,  and  also  to  land 
passengers  and  other  commodities  brought  over  one  tide  att  the  said 
Slipp  at  Burger^s  Path,  and  the  other  tide  at  *  Countess  Key,'  {Fly 
Market;)  and  if  these  terms  were  not  agreed  to,  then  the  action  now 
depending  against  him  for  the  said  rent  be  prosecuted  to  the  utmost." 

This  arrangement  of  the  ferry  was,  on  the  Ist  of  October,  1707, 
somewhat  altered  in  the  terras  of  the  lease  to  James  Harding;  "that 
is  to  say,  every  Monday  and  Thursday,  at  Countess  Key,  every  Tues- 
day and  Pry  day,  at  Burger^s  Path,  and  every  Wednesday  and  Satur- 
day, at  the  Dock, Slip,  near  Col.  Cortlandt's  house,  and  at  no  other 
place  whatsoever."  Then,  in  the  early  part  of  the  year  1722,  the 
same  was  "  demised  and  lett  to  flfarm  to  William  Weblin,  butcher, 
for  the  term  of  five  years,  at  seventy-one  pounds,"  but  this  arrange- 
ment was  not  completed. 

The  war  with  the  French  at  this  period  (1705)  found,  as  Smith 
says,  "Our  harbor  being  wholly  unfortified;  a  French  privateer  ac- 
tually entered  it  in  1705,  and  put  the  inhabitants  in  great  consterna- 
tion."  They,  however,  soon  began  to  prepare  with  fortifications, 
ship  of  war,  and  privateers ;  one  of  the  latter,  a  brigantine,  called 
the  Dragon,  commanded  by  Captain  Guicks,  carrying  about  130  men, 
lay  in  the  harbor  preparing  for  sea ;  several  of  her  crew  being  allow- 
ed on  shore,  "  went  on  a  spree,"  which  ended  in  a  riot  and  the  death 
of  several  persons.  The  particulars  we  find  noticed  in  "The Boston 
News  Letter, ^^  October  1,  1705,  {dated  New  York,  September  24:) 
"On  the  19th  instant,  about  10  at  night,  some  privateers  began  a 
riot  before  the  Sheriflf's  house  of  this  city,  assembled  the  sheriff  at 
his  door  without  any  provocation,  &  beat  and  wounded  several  per^ 
sons  that  came  to  his  assistance,  &  in  a  few  minutes  the  privateers 
tumultously  met  together  in  great  numbers;  upon  which  forces  were 
sent  out  of  the  Fort  to  suppress  them,  and  the  Sheriff,  Officers,  and 
some  men  belonging  to  Her  Majestie's  ships  made  a  body  to  do  the 
same ;  but  before  these  forces  could  meet  with  them,  the  privateers  un- 
happily met  i^ew^  Wharton  Featherstone-Hough  and  Ensign  Alcock, 
(two  gentlemen  of  the  Hon.  Col.  Livesay's  Regiment,  that  came  in 
the  Jamaica  Fleet,  who  were  peaceably  going  home  to  their  lodg- 
ings,) and  barbarously  murdered  the  first,  and  greviously  wounded 


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OLD   SLIP   MABKET.  g9 

the  latter  in  several  places  in  the  head,  and  brosied  his  body;  Rafter 
thej  had  knock'd  him  down  several  times  and  got  his  sword,  some  of 
them  run  Lieut,  Featherstone-Hough  in  at  the  left  side  thro'  his  heart, 
(as  is  supposed  with  Ensign  Alcock's  sword,)  of  which  wound  he 
immediately  dyed.  Just  as  the  fact  was  done,  the  privateers  were 
attacked  by  the  Sheriff,  Officers,  and  Seamen  of  Her  Majestie's  Ship, 
and  some  of  the  town,  &  in  a  short  time  were  obliged  to  fly ;  several 
of  lK>th  sides  were  wounded ;  some  of  the  privateers  were  then  taken 
prisoners,  and  several  since,  who  were  committed,  &  do  believe  will 
suffer  according  to  law ;  the  soldiers  killed  one  of  the  privateers  that 
was  flying  from  them.  One  Erasmus  Wilkins  was  apprehended  on 
Saturday  last  &  committed,  and  by  the  evidence  ^tis  believed  he  is 
the  man  that  murdered  Lieut.  Featherstone-Hough ;  it  would  be  too 
tedious  to  relate  the  particulars,  but  their  insolence  is  beyond  ex- 
pression :  this  riot  was  chiefly  acted  by  the  privateers  belonging  to 
the  Briganteen  Dragon^  Capt.  Guicks,  Commander." 

The  next  year  (1706)  greater  exertions  are  made  for  the  defence 
of  the  city ;  the  Mayor  and  Council  petition  Governor  Cornbury  on 
the  8th  of  May,  stating  *'  the  iminent  danger  wee  conceive  the  city 
to  be  in  by  an  invasion  of  the  common  enemy,"  and  "  the  vigorous 
defence  by  reason  our  fortifications  are  wholly  out  of  repair."  They 
wish  them  repaired,  and  ''  the  making  of  others  in  convenient  places ; 
the  mounting  of  artillery  and  the  compleat  arming  of  our  inhabit- 
ants." The  next  meeting  of  the  "  Council,"  (14  May,)  it  was  "order- 
ed that  what  beams  the  carpenters  shall  use  of  the  Widdow  Helena 
Cooper's  for  the  making  of  carriages  for  the  mounting  of  the  guns," 
"  to  be  paid  for  by  the  city,  as  shall  be  appraised." 

On  the  11th  of  July  following,  an  ordinance  was  passed  compell- 
ing all  the  inhabitants,  or  their  providing  sufficient  laborers,  "  to 
work  att  or  upon  the  fortifications  by  equal  terms  &  wards  soe  often 
aa  they  shall  have  notice;  to  appear  with  a  good  spade,  shovell,  ax 
or  pick,  or  other  necessary  tool  or  instrument." 

The  "  Council"  again  petitioned  (on  the  22d  July)  to  the  Governor, 
saying,  "We  haveing  received  advice  from  Antigua  that /owr  French 
privateers  arc  sayled  out  of  Martineque  for  this  coast,  and  also  that 
Monsieur  Deberville,  with  a  strong  squadron  of  ships  of  war,  de- 
signs speedily  to  attacque  this  city  and  province.  We  therefore 
must  humbly  pray  your  Excell^y  that  your  Lordship  would  most  fa- 
vorably be  pleased  to  lay  an  embargo  in  this  port  for  such  term  aa 
your  Lordship  shall  judge  requisite." 

From  the  "  Boston  News  Letter,"  August  5,  (1706,)  following,  we 
again  extract  the  news  from  New  York,  dated  29th  July,  which  tells 
08  that "  Last  week  an  embargo  was  laid  here  for  60  days,  and  all 


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90  OLD   BLIP   MARKET. 

persons  forbid  all  manner  of  labor,  and  all  shops  shut  up  until  the 
fortifications  of  the  city  be  finished,  so  that  we  have  near  1,000  men 
at  work  every  day."  The  next  week  after,  the  same  paper  says, 
"  Our  fortifications  we  hope  will  be  compleat  this  week,  and  we  shall 
have  100  cannon  mounted  in  this  city,  besides  the  Fort,  (Greorge,) 
which  is  also  put  into  very  good  repair  &  order." 

The  people,  however,  had  no  confidence  in  Governor  Cornbury; 
he  had  deceived  them  before,  when  money,  &c.,  were  granted  for  the 
defence  of  the  city,  he  appropriated  to  his  own  private  use.  Smith 
says,  **  We  never  had  a  governor  so  universally  detested,  nor  any 
who  so  richly  deserved  the  public  abhorrence.  In  spite  of  his  noble 
descent,  his  behavior  was  trifling,  mean,  and  extravagant. 

"  It  was  not  uncommon  for  him  to  dress  himself  in  a  woman's 
habit,  and  then  to  patrole  the  Fort  in  which  he  resided.  Such  freaks 
of  low  humor  exposed  him  to  the  universal  contempt  of  the  people; 
but  their  indignation  was  kindled  by  his  despotick  rule,  savage  big- 
otry, insatiable  avarice,  and  injustice,  not  only  to  the  publick,  but 
even  his  private  creditors ;  for  he  left  some  of  the  lowest  tradesmen 
in  his  employment  unsatisfied  in  their  just  demands."  However,  the 
numerous  complaints  presented  to  the  Queen  obliged  her  to  revoke 
his  commission,  and  his  creditors  threw  him  into  one  of  the  jails  of 
the  City  Hall,  in  Wall  Street,  until  released  by  the  inheritance  ob- 
tained by  the  death  of  his  father.*  His  successor,  John  Lord  Love- 
lace, Baron  of  Harley,  arrived  here  in  the  month  of  December,  1708, 
and  before  a  period  of  six  months  had  passed,  he  was  laid  into  his 
grave,  "  from  a  disorder  contracted  in  crossing  the  ferry  on  his  ar- 
rival here."t  The  Lieut.  Governor,  Richard  Ingolsby,  was  then 
placed  in  command,  until  his  character  and  actions  became  known ; 
who,  like  Cornbury,  was  dismissed  from  the  oflSce;  and  in  1710, 
we  find  Robert  Hunter,  "  a  man  of  wit  and  personal  beauty,"  at  the 
head  as  the  Governor.^ 

About  this  period,  the  Mayor,  Jacobus  V.  Cortlandt,  held  several 
other  public  offices  besides,  which  were  attached  to  this  high  posi- 
tion, and  among  these  was  that  of  Clerk  of  the  Market  In  the  lat- 
ter office,  he  had  been  engaged  in  prosecuting  several  delinquent 
butchers,  from  whom  his  counsel  or  collector  had  recovered  cer- 
tain fines  or  penalties.  This  subject  was  brought  before  the  Jus- 
tices and  Vestrymen  on  the  17th  of  June,  1712,  when  "  Mr.  (Thomas) 
George  having  acquainted  this  Board,  that  he  has  in  his  hands  thirty 

pounds shillings,  which  he  recovered  of  several  butchers  at  the 

suit  of  Coll.  Jacobus  V.  Cortlandt,  which  moneys  he,  the  said  Coll. 
Cortlandt,  hath  given  to  the  use  of  the  poor  of  this  citty,  and  de* 

•  Dunlap'a  Hist.  N.  Y.,  p.  263,  VOL  I.    f  Smith's  Hist  N.Y.,  p.  191.    J  n)id.,  p- 19». 


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I 
OLD   SLIP  MABKET.  91 

sires  this  Board  will  order  bow  he  shall  dispose  thereof.  Ordered, 
he  paj  the  same  to  the  Church  Wardens  of  this  city,  for  the  use  of 
the  poor  of  this  city,  whose  receipt  shall  be  a  sufficient  discharge  for 
80  doing. 

'*  Ordered,  tiie  Church  Wardens  lend  Phillip  Batten,  butcher, 
thirty  shillings,  in  order  to  go  on  with  his  trade,  (he  being  reduced 
to  great  poverty  by  reason  of  his  wife  being  delirious,)  being  an  ob- 
ject of  charity."* 

In  the  year  1711,  the  war  with  the  French  had  made  it  necessary 
for  the  authorities  to  take  possession  of  and  use  all  the  public  mar* 
ket-houses  in  the  city  to  build  battoes  in,  except  this  one  at  Bur- 
ger's Path,t  which  then  appeared  to  be  the  principal  market-place, 
as  it  was  more  central  and  in  the  more  thickly  settled  portion  of  the 
city.  "  Twenty  ship  and  house  carpenters  (says  Smith)  were  impressed 
into  the  service  for  their  building,  while  commissions  were  appointed 
to  purchase  provisions  and  other  necessaries,  and  empowered  to 
break  open  houses  for  that  purpose,  and  to  impress  men,  vessels, 
horses,  and  waggons  for  transporting  the  stores.'^  The  following 
will  give  some  idea  of  tiie  prices  that  were  paid  for  some  kinds  of 
these  provisions: 

£.    B.    d. 

"Good  prime  pork,  per  barrel, 8  10  0 

Indian  corn,  per  bushel, 026 

Pease,  do. 0    5  0 

Buttock  of  beef,  per  pound,  (smoaked,)  •       -       -       0    0  7 

Cheese,  do. 0    0  6." 

After  peace  was  concluded,  which  took  place  in  the  month  of 
March,  1713,  the  prices  of  provisions  became  much  reduced,  and  so 
remained  until  the  hard  winter  of  1717,  when  a  large  portion  of  the 
country  was  covered  with  a  deep  snow,  and  supplies  were  stopped 
from  many  places,  and  again  the  price  advanced. 

The  farmers  in  the  Eastern  States  suffered  severely,  which  is  par- 
ticularly described  in  "  Lewis'  History  of  Lynn."  He  says,  "  Two 
great  storms  on  the  twentieth  and  twenty-fourth  of  February  cover- 
ed the  ground  so  deep  with  snow,  that  people  for  some  days  could 
not  pass  from  one  house  to  another.  Old  Indians  of  an  hundred 
years  said  that  their  fathers  had  never  told  them  of  such  a  snow. 
It  was  from  ten  to  twenty  feet  deep,  and  generally  covered  the  lower 
story  of  the  houses.  Cottages  of  one  story  were  entirely  buried,  so 
that  the  people  dig  paths  from  one  house  to  another  under  the  snow. 
Soon  after,  a  slight  rain  fell,  and  the  frost  crusted  the  snow;  and 

*  Records  in  the  poeeeesion  of  6.  H.  Moore,  Esq. 
t  See  '*  Flatter'i  Barrack  Market-Plaoet." 


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92  OLD   SLIP   MARKET. 

the  people  went  out  of  their  chamber  windows  and  walked  over  it. 
Many  of  the  farmers  lost  their  sheep ;  and  most  of  the  sheep  and 
swine  which  were  saved  lived  from  one  to  two  weeks  without  food. 
One  man  had  some  hens  buried  near  his  barn,  which  were  dug  out 
alive  eleven  days  after. 

"  This  snow  formed  a  remarkable  era  in  New  England ;  and  old 
people,  in  relating  an  event,  would  say  that  it  happened  so  many 
years  before  or  after  the  great  snow." 

Three  years  after,  in  the  month  of  January,  it  is  said,  "on  the  9th, 
10th,  11th,  and  12th  instant,  great  numbers  went  over  Hudson's  River 
upon  the  ice  from  New  York  to  New  Jersey,  since  which  the  weather 
has  been  very  warm,  like  the  spring,  and  all  the  ice  gone."* 

In  the  spring  of  1726,  prices  of  provisions  were  noticed  in  TJie 
New  Y(yf*k  Gazette^  on  the  9th  of  May,  as  follows:  "Pork,  558.; 
Beef,  34  to  35s.  per  barrel;  Flour,  lis.  to  lis.  6d.  per  hundred; 
Fresh  Beef  in  the  market,  3d.  ^  penny  per  pound,  by  the  quarter, 
and  4d.  per  pound  smaller  pieces;  and  Pease,  4s.  6d.  per  bushel." 

In  the  Laws  of  1720,  this  market-place  is  noticed  "  as  the  market- 
house  at  Burger's  Path,"  and  we  find  eight  years  after  it  was  still 
known  by  that  name,  when  the  Board  gave  the  inhabitants  "  liberty 
to  repair  the  market-hoiLse  at  Burger^a  Path.^^  Again,  in  May,  1721, 
"  John  Brown,  at  Mrs.  Beurk's,  over  against  the  *  market-house  by 
Burger's  Path,'  sells  European  goods  at  very  reasonable  prices,  and 
takes  for  pay  Flour,  Biskets,  Beef,  Pork,  Gammons,"  &c.t  Two 
months  after,  however,  the  name  assumed  the  proper  one,  as  we  find 
in  the  same  paper,  "Thursday  next,  at  nine  in  the  morning,  at  the 
*  Old  Slip  Market,^  will  be  exposed  for  sale,  by  publick  vendue,  goods 
of  various  kinds ;"  and  Lyne's  Map  of  this  year,  marks  No.  9,  "  Old 
Slip  Markety^  standing  on  a  line  of  the  present  Pearl  Street,  with 
the  rear  next  to  the  "  Slip."  It  continues  in  the  "  papers"  with  its 
right  name,  although  at  times  slip  will  be  spelled  with  two  p's  in 
describing  the  residence  (in  1734)  of  a  "Book-binder,  lives  in  Duke 
Street,  (formerly  caUed  Bayard  Street  J  near  the  *  Old  Slipp  Mar- 
ket.'" "Looking-glasses,  new  silvered,  and  the  frames  plainc  japan- 
ed ;  also,  all  sorts  of  Picktures  made  and  sold,  and  all  manner  of 
painting  work  done.  Also,  Looking-glasses  and  all  sorts  of  painters' 
coulers  and  oyl,  sold  at  reasonable  rates,  by  Gerardus  Duykinck, 
at  the  sign  of  the  two  Cupids,  near  the  *01d  Slip  Market,'  where  you 
may  have  ready  money  for  old  looking-glasses;"  and  in  1736, 
"  Stephen  Bayard  has  Muscovada  sugar  to  be  sold  between  the  Old 
Slipp  and  Koenties  Markets.''^ 

From  about  the  years  1725  to  1733  this  market  appeared  at  the 
•  Boston  News  Letter,  February  1, 1720.     f  N.  Y.  G-.zctte,  1729.     J  N.  Y.  JoornaL 


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OLD   SLIP   MARKET.  93 

height  of  its  prosperity,  and  it  was  then  considered  the  best  in  the 
dty ;  but  in  1735  the  ''Fly  Market"  became  its  rival,  as  an  equal 
number  of  stands  were  leased,  as  will  appear  under  the  head  of  ''Fly 
Market,"  at  that  date. 

This  leasing  of  all  the  stands  took  place  on  the  10th  of  Decem- 
ber, when  the  Market  Committee  reported  that  they  had  met  and 
agreed  with  the  following  butchers  for  stands  in  the  ''Market-House 
at  Burger's  Path:" 

"  To  Israel  and  Timothy  Horsefield,  2  stalls,  Nos.  1-2,  at  £22  0  0. 


To  Samuel  Brown, 

8 

"      10  0. 

To  Samuel  Hopson,  - 

4 

"      8  0  0. 

To  Eliza  Carpenter,     - 

5 

"    16  0  0. 

To  Widow  Davis,    - 

6 

"      10  0. 

To  Mich'  Christopher  Row, 

7 

"      8  0  0." 

Israel  Horsefield  lived  at  Brooklyn  near  the  ferry,  where  he  had 
built  several  buildings,  and  in  doing  so,  had  no  doubt  by  accident 
overstepped  his  bounds,  and  got  upon  the  property  of  the  Corpora- 
tion ;  but  was  fortunate  in  securing  a  lease  on  the  26th  February, 
1735,  '*  of  that  part  of  the  wharfe  and  slaughter-house  he  has  lately 
built  and  put  upon  the  land  of  this  Corporation,  near  the  ferry  at 
Brookland,  at  the  annual  rent  otfve  shilling."  This  part  of  the 
corporation's  no  doubt  he  purchased  afterwards,  and  it  became  pos- 
sessed by  Israel,  Junr.,  who  advertised  it  for  sale  in  the  New  York 
Gatette  and  Weekly  Mercury,  February,  1769,  "  consisting  of  a  house 
and  lot  of  ground,  slaughter-house  and  barn,  situate  at  Brooklyn 
Ferry,  on  Long  Island." 

The  marketrhouse,  even  with  an  increased  number  of  stands,  soon 
appeared  too  small,  as  the  country  people  were  crowded  out,  and 
caused  many  to  stop  at  the  "  Fly,"  which  was  close  by  the  ferry. 
This  was  a  spur  to  the  "  inhabitants  of  the  East  Ward,  near  and 
adjoining  the  market-house,  contiguous  to  the  Old  Slip,  called  Bur^ 

per's  Path,  who  applied  to  the  Board  on  the  21st ,  1736, 

through  Alderman  Walter,  to  enlarge  the  market-house  at  their  own 
charge  and  expense,"  so  that  a  part  thereof  be  for  the  use  of  the 
country  people.  This  enlarging  did  not  tend  to  give  much  en- 
couragement to  business,  as  I  find  but  five  stands  leased  for  one 
year  in  March,  1737,  to  the  same  persons,  and  Nos.  6  and  7  are  not 
noticed. 

Some  of  these  butchers,  with  others  of  "  Fly"  and  "  Coenties  Mar- 
kets," were  so  unfortunate  as  to  have  negro  slaves  engaged  in  the 
"Great  Negro  Plot,"  which  occurred  a  few  years  afterwards.  This 
information  is  derived  principally  from  Horsmanden's  account, 
whose  conclusion  was,  that  these  conspirators,  both  white  and  black, 


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94  OLD   SLIP   MARKET. 

had  designed  to  destroy  the  city  by  fire,  and  massacre  the  inhabit- 
ants ;  bnt  fortunately,  in  conseqaence  of  a  robbery  having  been  com- 
mitted some  weeks  before  the  appointed  time,  which  was  fixed  on 
St.  Patrick's  night,  {March  17,)  1741,  and  while  the  police  and 
magistrates  were  engaged  in  tracing  out  the  thieyes,  several  fires 
occurred,  of  which  the  governor's  house,  the  chapel,  and  other  build- 
ings in  Ihe  Fort  {Oeorge)  were  burnt  to  the  ground.  A  few  daya 
after,  the  roof  of  Capt.  Warner's  house  was  found  in  flames,  but  was 
soon  put  out  by  the  fire-engines:  then  followed  the  partial  burning 
of  the  store-house  of  Mr.  Van  Zandt ;  then  the  cow  stables,  near 
Quick's,  in  the  "  Fly;"  then  at  the  house  of  one  Ben.  Thomas,  next 
door  to  Capt.  Sarly's ;  then  the  haystack  standing  near  the  Court- 
House  and  stables  of  Joseph  Murray,  Esq.,  in  the  Broadway;  then 
at  the  house  of  Sergeant  Burns,  opposite  Fort  Garden ;  then  at  Mrs. 
Hilton's  house,  at  the  comer  of  the  building  next  to  tiie  ''Fly  Mar^ 
ket;"  then  at  Col.  Philips'  store-house;  and  then  the  alarm  which 
proceeded  from  the  cellar  of  a  baker  near  Coentiea  Market^  which 
was  all  of  a  smother,  and  chips  in  a  blaze,  but  was  soon  suppressed ; 
added  to  all  this,  the  evidence  from  the  criminals,  which  had  begun 
to  be  developed  of  this  infernal  plot,  and  the  thoughts  of  the  former 
conspiracy,*  (1712,)  all  tended  to  create  the  most  intense  excite- 
ment among  all  classes  of  the  citizens. 

"At  this  time  the  City  of  New  York  contained  a  population  of 
about  twelve  thousand  souls,  and  of  whom  one-sixth  were  slavq9."t 
So  numerous  were  they,  that  it  was  thought  they  were  more  fully 
organized  than  was  afterwards  proven,  and  so  strong  was  the  feel- 
ing against  them  at  first,  that  they  were  without  defence;  "all  the 
counsel  in  the  city  were  arrayed  against  them,  and  volunteered  their 
services  in  behalf  of  the  crown." 

Some  who  had  always  born  good  characters,  were  deserted  by 
their  masters,  who  believed  they  were  all  guilty  alike;  many  were 
persuaded  to  plead  guilty,  and  throw  themselves  upon  the  mercy  of 
the  Court;  and  others,  again,  were  convicted  on  the  testimony  of 
other  negroes,  who  gave  false  evidence  to  save  their  own  lives. 

The  two  butchers,  Timothy  and  Israel  Horsefield,  noticed  as  oc- 
cupying stands  Nos.  1  and  2,  in  this  market^  lived  at  Brooklyn,  L.  I., 
and,  as  it  appears  from  the  evidence,  they  had  three  slaves  on  trial, 
two  of  whom  were  found  guilty,  and  their  sentence  was  transporta- 
tion. Mrs.  Eliza  Carpenter,  who  occupied  stand  No.  5,  had  two,  one 
of  which  was  burnt,  and  the  other  transported.  Edward  Kelly,  of 
"Fly  Market,"  had  one  transported;  and  Isaac  Yarian  one  also 
transported. 

•  See  '*  Coentiefl  Slip  Market''  f  Smith's  Hist  N.  T.,  p.  438,  439. 


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OLD   SLIP   MARKET.  95 

It  appears  they  had  the  city  divided  into  two  districts,  and  or- 
ganized in  two  parties:  one  of  which  called  themselves  ^'Long 
Bridge  Boys/'  who  met  at  John  Romme's  in  Broad  Street;  and  the 
other,  *'  Smith  Fly  Boys,"  who  met  at  John  Hughson's,  living  at  the 
North  River,  where  he  kept  a  low  place  of  resort,  near  the  foot  of 
(note)  Liberty  Street,  in  John  Thnrman's  house.  Hnghsdn  and 
Bomme  were  white  men,  and  were  both  engaged  in  this  conspiracy ; 
the  former  appeared  to  be  the  ''  ringleader ;"  and  at  a  great  meeting, 
where  some  forty  or  fifty  negroes  met  at  his  house,  he  swore  them 
all,  *'  to  bum  and  kill,"  every  one  to  (set  on)  fire  his  master's  house, 
**kill  master  and  mistress,  and  then  fire  the  Fort."  '*  That  when  the 
dty  was  on  fire,  the  negroes  were  to  meet  at  the  end  of  Broadway, 
next  to  the  /'te&b,"  (Park,)  The  following  evidence  from  confes- 
sion made,  shows  the  fact  of  the  slaves  of  the  above  butchers  being 
interested :  from  Pedro,  (Depeyster's  slave,)  "  says,  he  went  out  one 
Sunday  morning  with  Mrs.  Carpenter^s  negro  Albany;  that  as  they 
went  along  the  Broadway,  they  met  with  Mr.  Sleydall's  Jack,  who 
was  going  to  Comfort's  for  tea-water;  that  at  the  (Fly)  market, 
near  Mr.  Delancy's  house,  they  met  two  other  negroes;  that  Albany 
asked  them  to  go  down  to  Hughson's,  and  drink  witii  them ;  that 
they  first  drank  cyder,  then  raw  drams."  Braveboy  (Mrs.  Kier- 
stede^s)  says,  **  that  some  time  last  summer,  Carpenter^s  Albany  came 
to  his  mistress's  house  to  bring  meat,  and  called  him  into  the  yard, 
saying  he  wanted  to  speak  with  him,  and  then  asked  him  whether 
he  would  join  with  them?"  "Then  Albany  told  him,  he  would  help 
him  to  a  gun  to  kill  his  master."  **  Variants  Worcester  teid,  that  in 
Christmas  holidays,  LefFerts'  Pompey  carried  him  to  Hughson's, 
where  were  many  negroes  at  supper;  that  they  had  punch,  Ac,  and 
after  supper,  Hughson,  his  wife  and  daughter,  swore  to  a  plot 
against  the  white  people,  and  that  he  (Hughson)  swore  most  or  all 
of  the  negroes  then  present,  among  whom  the  prisoner  was  sworn ; 
that  some  swore  by  one  thing,  and  some  by  another;  there  were 
present  the  following  negroes,  viz. :  Lefferts'  Pompey,  Kelly's  Lon- 
don, Carpenter's  Tickle,  and  Albany  and  Bastian.  Codweis's  Cam- 
bridge asked  Horsfidd^s  Cceser  and  Chiy  about  it,  who  both  con- 
fessed they  had  been  sworn  at  Hughson's,  and  told  him,  when  the 
work  was  going  forward  at  York,  (meaning  the  city,  as  the  Hors- 
fields,  or  masters  of  these  two  negroes,  were  butchers,  who  lived  over 
the  water,  Brooklyn,  Long  Island,  opposite  to  this  city,)  they  would 
give  the  prisoner  notice,  and  take  him  over  with  them  in  a  canoe  to 
assist  them.  William  Nail,  servant  to  Thomas  Cox,  of  the  City  of 
New  York,  butcher,  {in  Coenties  Market,)  being  duly  sworn  upon  the 
Holy  Evangelists  of  Almighty  Ood,  deposeth  and  saith,  that  he,  the 


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96  OLD   SLIP   MARKET. 

deponent,  having  discourse  with  one  London^  a  negro  man  slave,  be- 
longing to  Edward  Kdly,  butcher^  concerning  negroes  that  were 
taken  up  on  account  of  the  plot,  heard  the  said  London  swear,  by 
6 — d,  that  if  he,  the  said  London,  should  be  taken  up  on  account  of 
the  plot,  he  would  hang  or  burn  all  the  negroes  in  York." 

One  hundred  and  fifty-four  negroes  were  committed  to  prison,  of 
whom  fourteen  were  burnt  at  the  stake,  (about  half  way  in  Augustus 
Street,  between  Duane  and  Pearl  Streets;)  eighteen  hanged,  Cccser, 
Varick's  negro,  was  hung  in  chains  on  the  Island,  near  the  powder* 
house,  not  far  from  the  corner  of  Centre  and  Pearl  Streets.  Seven- 
teen were  transported,  and  the  rest  were  pardoned  or  discharged 
for  want  of  proof. 

Twenty  white  persons  were  committed,  of  which  the  following 
were  executed :  John  Hughson,  his  wife  Sarah,  Margaret  Kerry,  and 
John  Ury.  Hughson  was  hung  in  chains,  on  the  grounds  now  occu- 
pied by  the  "  Catharine  Market."  In  the  month  of  October,  the  Com- 
mon Council  petition  the  General  Assembly,  praying  that  the  negroes 
executed  for  the  late  conspiracy  be  paid  for  out  of  the  revenue. 

In  the  evidence  shown  in  this  "  Great  Negro  Plot,"  the  name  of 
William  Nail,  servant  to  Thomas  Cox,  is  noticed.  The  name  servant 
was  usually  given  to  those  of  any  age  or  sex  who  were  unable  to 
pay  passage-money  across  the  ocean,  but  instead  of  it,  bound  them- 
selves for  a  period  of  time  agreed  upon  to  the  shipping  merchants, 
which  time  the  merchant  or  captain  had  liberty  to  dispose  of  to  the 
best  advantage,  on  their  arrival.  At  a  later  period,  many  such  per- 
sons were  known  as  "  Redemptionists;"  that  is,  they  had  power  to 
redeem  their  persons  by  paying  certain  sums  of  money  instead  of 
labor  or  service. 

The  arrangements  to  obtain  a  home  in  the  "  New  World"  in  this 
manner  commenced  at  a  very  early  period,  and  some  cases  are  in- 
deed quite  novel.  Among  the  earliest  noticed,  appears  in  the  follow- 
ing law-suit  which  took  place  on  the  27th  of  March,  1656.  Gristie 
Rutzersen  brings  action  against  Dirk  Van  Schelluyne  before  the 
Court,  when  she  states,  "  that  she  brought  last  year  a  girl,  named 
Mayke  Cornelissen,  with  her  from  Holland,  and  disbursed  if.  50 
(florins)  in  Holland  for  her  passage,  on  condition  that  if  she  did  not 
remain  here  with  her,  she  should  pay  her  in  place  of  the  flF.  50  Hol- 
lands, ff.lOOhere ;  and  whereas,  the  maid  hath  been  engaged  by  others, 
and  deft.  (Schelluyne)  hath  order  to  satisfy  her ;  the  pltff.  requests 
that  he  be  condemned  to  pay  her  the  flF.  100.  Deft,  says,  that  Mayke 
Cornelissen  hath  left  an  act.  with  him,  which  he  exhibits  in  Court, 
in  which  she  acknowledges  that  flF.  50  were  paid  in  Holland  by  the 
pltflf.  for  her  passage,  for  which  she  should  serve  here  one  year;  but 


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OLD  SLIP   MARKET.  97 

in  ease  she  came  to  marry  in  the  meantime,  she  should  give  her  here 
ff.IOO  for  the  ff.50  paid  in  Holland;  and  whereas,  pltff.  could  not  re- 
tain her  in  her  service,  she  hired  herself  with  another ;  maintains, 
consequently,  that  she  owes  only  ff.50."  The  Court  adjudges  the 
defendant  to  pay  ff.lOO.* 

In  the  following  month  of  July,  '^  Loaurens  And^  Van  Boskerk,  a 
turner,  here  complained  that  Frederick  Adryasen,  Sen^.,  his  man,  ran 
away  from  last  Sunday  morning,  without  either  words  or  reasons, 
and  he  hired  him  in  Amsterdam  for  8  years,  A  he  is  not  bound  yet 
more  than  1  year ;  requecsts  that  he  be  constrained  by  order  of  the 
Court  to  serve  out  his  time.'' 

We  leave  the  *^  Records,"  and  pass  to  a  period  when  '*  Newspa- 
pers" were  first  printed  on  this  continent,  to  which  Boston  must 
claim  the  honor.  In  the  advertisements  which  then  appear,  ''few 
and  far  between,"  we  find  these  ''  servants"  noticed.  In  the  Boston 
News  Letter  of  September  8, 1705,  we  read:  "  Ran  away  at  Boston, 
about  3  weeks  ago,  from  his  master,  Capt.  Samuel  Rymes,  com- 
mander of  the  Barbadoes  merchant,  a  nuwrservant^  named  Joseph 
Ingerson,  aged  about  22  years,  a  well-set  young  man.  Whoever 
shall  apprehend  said  servant,  and  him  safely  convey  to  his  said  mas- 
ter, shall  have  forty  shillings  reward  and  reasonable  charges." 

The  same  paper,  dated  3d  of  June,  next  year,  in  an  ''editorial," 
thus  shows  the  advantage  of  encouraging  the  importing  of  these 
white  servants,  instead  of  black  slaves:  "  By  last  year's  bill  of  mor* 
tality  for  the  Town  of  Boston,  in  No.  100, '  News  Letter,'  we  are 
furnished  with  a  list  of  44  negroes'  death  last  year,  which  being  com- 
puted one  with  another  at  £30  per  head,  amounts  to  the  sum  of  one 
thousand  three  hundred  and  twenty  pounds,  of  which  we  would  make 
this  remark :  that  the  importing  of  negroes  into  this  or  the  neigh- 
bouring provinces  is  not  so  beneficial  either  to  the  crown  or  country 
as  white  servants  would  be. 

'*  For  negroes  do  not  carry  arms  to  defend  the  country  as  whites  do. 

"  Negroes  are  generally  eye-servants,  great  thieves,  much  addicted 
to  stealing,  lying,  and  purloining. 

"  They  do  not  people  our  country  as  whites  would  do,  whereby 
we  should  be  strengthened  against  an  enemy. 

"  By  encouraging  the  importing  of  white  men-servants,  allowing 
somewhat  to  the  importer,  most  husbandmen  in  the  country  might 
be  furnished  with  servants  for  8,  9  or  £10  a  head,  who  are  not  able 
to  launch  out  40  or  X50  for  a  negro,  the  now  common  price. 

"  A  man  then  might  buy  a  white  man-servant,  we  suppose,  for  £10, 
to  serve  4  years^  and  boys  for  the  same  price,  to  serve  6,  8  or  10 

^  RfHfflrdfc 

Vol.  I.— 7 


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98  OLD  SLIP  MARKET. 

years.  K  a  white  servant  die,  the  loss  exceeds  not  £10,  bnt  if  a 
negro  dies  'tis  a  very  great  loss  to  the  husbandman;  three  years' in- 
terest of  the  price  of  the  negro  will  near  upon,  if  not  altogether,  pur- 
chase a  white  man-servant. 

'*  If  necessity  call  for  it,  that  the  husbandman  must  fit  out  a  man 
against  the  enemy,  if  he  has  a  negro,  he  cannot  send  him;  butif  he 
has  a  white  servant,  'twill  answer  the  end,  and  perhaps  save  his  son 
at  home. 

''Were  merchants  and  masters  encouraged,  as  already  said,  to 
bring  in  men-servants,  there  needed  not  be  such  complaint  against 
superiors  impressing  our  children  to  the  war ;  there  would  then  be 
men  enough  to  be  had  without  impressing. 

''  The  bringing  in  of  such  servants  would  much  enrich  this  prov- 
ince, because  husbandmen  would  not  only  be  able  far  better  to  ma- 
nure what  lands  are  already  under  improvement,  but  would  also  im* 
prove  a  great  deal  more  that  now  lyes  waste  under  woods,  and  ena- 
ble this  province  to  set  about  raising  of  harvest  stores,  which  would 
be  greatly  advantageous  to  the  crown  of  England  and  this  province. 

''  For  the  raising  of  hemp  here,  so  as  to  make  sail-cloth  and  cord- 
age to  furnish  but  our  own  shipping,  would  hinder  the  importing  it, 
or  save  considerable  sums  in  a  year  to  make  returns  for  which  we 
now  do,  and  in  time  might  be  capacitated  to  furnish  England  not 
only  with  sail-cloth  and  cordage,  but  likewise  with  pitch,  tar,  hemp, 
and  other  stores  which  they  are  now  obliged  to  purchase  in  foreign 
nations. 

'*  Suppose  the  government  here  would  allow  forty  shillings  per 
head,  for  five  years,  to  such  as  should  import  every  of  these  years 
100  white  men-servants,  and  each  to  serve  4  years,  the  cost  would 
be  but  £200  a  year,  and  a  1,000  for  the  five  years;  the  first  100 
servants  being  free  the  4th  year,  they  serve  the  5th  for  wages,  and 
the  6th  there  is  100  that  goes  out  into  the  woods,  and  settles  a  100 
families  to  strengthen  and  barricade  us  from  the  Indians,  and  also 
a  100  families  more  every  year  successively. 

"And  here  you  see  that  in  one  year  the  town  of  Boston  has  lost 
£1,320  by  44  negroes,  which  is  also  a  loss  to  the  country  in  general, 
and  for  a  less  loss,  (if  it  may  not  improperly  be  so  called,)  for  a 
£1,000,  the  country  may  have  500  men  in  five  years'  time  for  the  44 
negroes  dead  in  one  year. 

"A  certain  person  within  these  6  years  had  two  negroes  dead, 
computing  both  at  £60  per  head,  to  have  served  24  years,  at  4  years 
apiece,  without  running  such  a  great  risque,  and  the  whites  would 
have  strengthened  the  country,  that  negroes  do  not.  'T  would  do 
well  that  none  of  those  servants  be  liable  to  be  impressed  during 


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OLD  SLIP   MARKET.  99 

tiieir  service  of  agreement  at  their  first  landing.  That  such  servants 
bebg  sold  or  transported  out  of  this  province  during  the  time  of 
tbeir  service,  the  persons  that  buy  them  be  liable  to  pay  £3  into 
the  treasury." 

Some  twenty  years  after  Boston,  New  York  began  by  publishing 
the  N.  Y.  Gazette,  in  which  we  find,  dated  May  9, 1726,  ''  The  ship 
Happy  Betum  is  lately  arrived  at  the  City  of  New  York  from  Dub- 
lin, with  men  and  women  servanta;  many  of  the  men  are  tradesmen, 
as  blacksmiths,  carpenters,  weavers,  taylors,  cordwainers,  and  other 
trades.  Which  aervanis  are  to  be  seen  on  board  of  said  vessel  lay- 
ing over  against  Mr.  Read's  Wharf,  and  to  be  disposed  of  by  John 
A  Joseph  Read,  on  reasonable  terms." 

Professor  Kalm,  on  his  arrival  at  Philadelphia,  in  1748,  in  the 
eihip  '*  Mary  Oally,"  Captain  Lawson,  says  he  went  on  shore  with 
the  captain,  '*  but  before  he  went,  he  {the  captain)  strictly  charged 
the  second  mate  to  let  no  one  of  the  German  refugees  out  of  the 
ship,  unless  he  paid  for  his  passage,  or  somebody  else  paid  for  him, 
or  bought  him."  Of  the  various  kinds  of  servants  then  employed,  he 
further  describes  as  follows:  *'The  servants  which  are  made  use  of 
in  the  English-American  Colonies  are  either  free  persons,  or  slaves, 
and  the  former  are  again  of  two  difierent  sorts. 

"  1.  Those  who  are  quite  free,  serve  by  the  year ;  they  are  not  only 
allowed  to  leave  their  service  at  the  expiration  of  their  year,  but  may 
leave  it  at  any  time  when  they  do  not  agree  with  their  masters. 
However,  in  that  case  they  are  in  danger  of  losing  their  wages, 
which  are  very  considerable.  A  man-servant  who  has  some  abili- 
ties, gets  between  sixteen  and  twenty  pounds  in  Pennsylvania  cur- 
rency, but  those  in  the  country  do  not  get  so  much.  A  servant-maid 
gets  eight  or  ten  pounds  a  year;  these  servants  have  their  food  be- 
sides their  wages,  but  must  buy  their  own  clothes,  and  what  they  get 
of  these  they  must  thank  their  master's  goodness  for. 

"  2.  The  second  kind  of  free  servants  consists  of  such  persons  as 
annually  come  from  Germany,  England,  and  other  countries,  in  order 
to  settle  here;  most  of  them  are  poor,  and  have  not  money  enough 
to  pay  their  passage,  which  is  between  six  and  eight  pounds  sterling 
for  each  person ;  therefore,  they  agree  with  the  captain  that  they 
will  suffer  themselves  to  be  sold  for  a  few  years  on  their  arrival. 
In  that  case,  the  person  who  buys  them  pays  the  freight  for  them ; 
but  frequently  very  old  people  come  over,  who  cannot  pay  their  pas- 
sage ;  they  therefore  sell  their  children,  so  that  they  serve  both  for 
themselves  and  for  their  parents. 

**  They  commonly  pay  fourteen  pounds  Pennsylvania  currency  for 
a  person  who  is  to  serve  four  years,  and  so  on  in  proportion. 


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100  OLD   SLIP  IIARKET. 

"  When  a  person  has  bought  sach  a  person  for  a  certain  number 
of  years,  and  has  an  intention  to  sell  him  again,  he  is  at  liberty  to 
do  so ;  but  he  is  obliged,  at  the  expiration  of  the  term  of  the  seryi* 
tude,  to  provide  the  usual  suit  of  dothea  for  the  servants,  unless  he 
has  made  that  part  of  the  bargain  with  the  purchaser. 

"  The  English  and  Irish  commonly  sell  themselves  for  four  years, 
but  the  Germans  frequently  agree  with  the  captain  before  they  set 
out  to  pay  him  a  certain  sum  of  money  for  a  certain  number  of  per> 
sons;  as  soon  as  they  arrive  in  America,  they  go  about  and  try  to 
get  a  man  who  will  pay  the  passage  for  them ;  in  return  they  give, 
according  to  their  circumstances,  one  or  several  of  their  children,  to 
serve  a  certain  number  of  years;  at  last  they  make  their  bargain 
with  the  highest  bidder. 

'*  3.  The  negroes  or  blacks  make  the  third  kind.  They  are  in  a 
manner  slaves ;  for  when  a  negro  is  once  bought,  he  is  the  purchaser's 
servant  as  long  as  he  lives,  unless  he  gives  him  to  another,  or  makes 
him  free.  Formerly  the  negroes  were  brought  over  from  Africa, 
and  bought  by  almost  every  one  who  could  afford  it.  The  Quakers 
alone  scrupled  to  have  slaves;  but  they  are  no  longer  so  nice,  and 
they  have  as  many  negroes  as  other  people.  The  price  of  negroes 
differs,  according  to  their  age,  health,  and  abilities.  A  full-grown 
negro  costs  from  forty  pounds  and  upwards  to  a  hundred  of  Penfi- 
aylvania  currency." 

We  again  turn  to  the  N.  Y.  Oazette,  to  notice  these  "  servants,'* 
who,  it  appears,  occasionally  ran  away  from  their  masters.  We 
read  that  "  William  Fletcher,  a  bought  servant,  is  run  away  from 
his  master  the  19th  of  last  March,  (1726,)  and  carried  with  him  some 
paper-money  belonging  to  his  master.  Whoever  can  apprehend  said 
servant,  or  discover  by  letter  where  he  is,  so  that  he  may  be  appre- 
hended, shall  have  five  pounds  paid  by  the  collector  of  His  Majesty's 
Customs  in  New  York.  Or  if  he  will  return  and  give  security  for 
his  good  behaviour,  he  shall  be  forgiven.  He  had  on  when  he  went 
away  a  dark-colored  kersey  coat,  with  brass  buttons  and  braid,  with 
duroy;  has  leather  breeches,  short  dark  hair;  by  trade  a  brush-maker; 
pretends  to  be  a  turner ;  he  makes  mops,  makea  and  mends  bellows." 

Four  years  after,  11th  of  May,  1730,  in  the  same  paper,  is  the 
notice  of  a  runaway  "  servant-man,"  which,  from  description,  would 
appear  to  have  been  a  useful  mechanic.  "  Ran  away  from  Nicholas 
Mathiessen,  of  the  City  of  New  York,  brewer,  one  servant-man, 
named  Henry  Fisher,  about  26  years  of  age.  He  is  by  trade  a  house- 
carpenter,  a  mason,  and  a  pump-maker ;  some  time  past  he  lived  with 
Mr.  Hold  in  this  city,  brewer.  Whoever  can  take  up  said  servant- 
man  and  bring  him  to  his  master,  or  secure  him  and  give  notice,  so 


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OLD  SLIP  MARKET.  101 

tbat  his  master  can  haye  him  again,  shall  have  five  poimds  reward, 
mud  ail  reasonable  charges  paid.'' 

Another,  at  a  later  period,  is  also  worthy  of  notice,  and  reads, 
^  Ban  away  from  Doctor  William  Band,  of  Boston,  on  the  third  day 
of  July  last,  an  indented  (German  servant-man,  named  Qeorge  Dacart, 
about  22  years  old;  is  well  set,  of  a  brown  complexion,  and  has  brown 
liair.  He  took  with  him  a  snit  of  blue  clothes,  with  metal  buttons, 
a  pair  of  cotton  breeches,  ozenbrigs  frock  and  trowsers,  and  yarn 
stockings.  He  also  took  from  his  master  a  silver-hilted  sword,  a 
erofls-CQt  saw,  and  a  fine  French  gnn.  He  is  supposed  to  be  gone 
towards  Philadelphia,  but  'tis  said  has  been  lately  seen  in  New  York, 
in  the  employ  of  a  batcher.  Whoever  takes  up  said  servant,  and 
eecures  him  in  goal,  shall  have  three  pounds  reward,  paid  by  the 
printer  of  this  paper;  or  returned  to  Boston  to  his  master,  three 
pistoles  reward,  and  all  reasonable  charges."* 

The  manner  of  disposing  of  the  unexpired  time  of  these  servants, 
in  case  of  death  or  otherwise,  is  shown  by  the  following :  "  On  Thurs- 
day, the  fifth  day  of  August  next,  will  be  exposed  to  sale,  by  way  of 
public  vendue,  the  times  of  two  men  and  one  woman  servant,  and 
several  other  things  belonging  to  the  estate  of  His  late  Excellency 
Governor  Montgomerie.^'  On  the  following  11th  of  October,  *'  a 
Tery  good,  handy  servant  gtrVs  time  of  six  years,  to  be  disposed  of; 
enquire  of  the  printer  hereof."t  Advancing  forty  years,  the  "  N.  Y. 
Journal,''  June  27, 1771,  says,  "  Ttoenty-three  months  of  the  time  of 
an  indented  servant-woman,  named  Hannah  Scott,  is  '  to  be  sold  for 
tight  pounds;^  inquire  of  Samuel  Bayard,  opposite  the  Old  English 
Church."  "  Rivington's  N.  T.  Gazetteer,''  July  22, 1773,  "  Servants 
and  Bedemptioners. — Afew  boys  and  girls,  men  and  women,  on  board 
the  ship  Needham,  William  Chevers,  commander,  just  arrived  from 
Newry,  whose  freights  are  payable  to  the  captain,  or  to  William 
Neilson."  In  the  same  paper,  on  the  29th  of  July  following:  "To 
be  sold,  upwards  of  four  years'  time  of  an  English  indented  ser- 
vant, a  young  man  about  twenty  years  of  age;  he  has  been  used  to 
aocompts,  and  writes  a  very  good  hand."  After  the  Revolution, 
we  find  in  "The  Daily  Advertiser,"  May  25,  1786,  noticed,  "To  be 
disposed  of,  the  time  of  ^u^o  Ckrman  Bedemptioners,  man  and  woman ; 
they  are  likely,  healthy,  and  strong,  and  have  four  years  and  a  half 
to  serve ;  enquire  of  the  printer." 

We  turn  back  to  this  now  "Old  Market-House,"  and  find  two 

items  noticed  in  relation  to  it  in  an  editorial  of  the  N.  T.  Gazette, 

June  17, 1754,  which  says,  "The  *01d  Slip  Market,'  at  the  foot  of 

Smith  Street,  which  for  a  long  time  has  remained  in  a  very  ruinous 

•  M.  T.  Gmftte,  Sept  S5, 1752.  f  lb.,  Julj  26, 1731. 


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102  O^^  SLIP  MARKET. 

condition,  is,  by  order  of  the  Mayor  and  Corporation,  now  repair^ 
ing,  having  a  good  stone  foundation  already  placed  and  a  strong 
boarded  floor  preparing  for  the  same;  and  will  in  a  very  little  time, 
from  the  close  application  of  the  workmen,  be  in  an  extraordinary 
good  condition  to  receive  both  city  and  country  produce.  We  are 
told  that  the  front  part  (if  not  the  whole)  of  the  market  is  to  be  re- 
shingled.'^  Then  follows,  "At  the  aforesaid  market,  on  Friday  last, 
was  exposed  to  sale  the  largest  veal  of  its  age  that  has  been  known 
for  many  years  to  be  brought  into  our  market.  It  was  but  six  weeks 
and  four  days  old,  and  bred  at  Woodbridge,  Rahway,  in  the  Jerseys^ 
and  was  sold  for  9  shillings  the  quarter,  one  of  which  weigh'd  up> 
wards  of  30  pounds." 

On  the  first  of  November  following,  the  market-house  appears  to 
have  been  finished,  when  a  committee  was  appointed  "  for  the  letting 
of  the  sellars  under  the  '  Slip  Market,'  for  the  use  and  benefit  of  this 
Corporation.'' 

As  late  as  1762,  the  Laws  designate  it  as  "  the  Market-House  at 
Old  Slip,  commonly  called  Burger's  Path ;"  but  whenever  noticed 
in  the  press,  it  is  usually  found  with  its-  proper  name,  used  as  a 
''  guide-post,"  in  advertising  somebody's  wares,  and  very  seldom  in 
an  editorial.  One  of  an  unfortunate  occurrence  which  happened  to 
one  of  the  butchers  is  thus  noticed  in  the  Gazette  of  July  3d,  1766: 
"  Mr.  Giles  Cooper,  a  butcher  of  the  *  Old  Slip  Market,'  partner  of 
John  Foster^  another  butcher,  fell  from  his  horse,  between  Hamstead 
and  Jamaica,  Long  Island,  last  Thursday  (27th  ult.)  afternoon,  and 
broke  so  many  of  his  bones  that  he  died  next  morning." 

Occasionally  meat  and  other  thieves  visited  the  markets  for  the 
purpose  of  procuring  a  good  dinner,  without  paying  the  current  coin, 
and  occasionally  they  were  caught;  when,  if  they  did  not  willingly 
pay,  they  received  a  coin  "  well  laid  on,"  which  would  do  some  of  the 
light-fingered  gentry  now-a-days  some  good ;  but  in  those  days,  there 
were  no  "  shysters,"  either  judges  or  lawyers,  who  would  like  to  di- 
vide their  plunder  or  run  the  risk  of  receiving  some  of  the  same  sort. 
Not  only  were  men  publicly  whipped,  but  women  too.  In  the  month 
of  September,  1766,  the  N.  Y.  Mercury  says,  "  This  day,  between  the 
hours  of  nine  and  eleven,  Mrs.  Johanna  Christian  Young,  and  another 
lady,  her  associate  from  Philadelphia,  being  found  guilty  of  grand 
larceny,  at  the  Mayor's  Court,  last  week,  are  to  be  set  on  two  chairs 
exalted  on  a  cart,  with  their  heads  and  faces  uncovered,  and  to  be 
carted  from  the  City  Hall,  to  that  part  of  the  Broadway  near  the 
new  English  Church,  from  thence  down  Maiden  Lane,  then  down 
the  Fly  to  the  Whitehall,  thence  to  the  Church  aforesaid,  and  then 
to  the  Whipping  Post,  where  each  of  them  are  to  receive  39  lashes^ 
to  remain  in  goal  for  one  week,  and  then  to  depart  the  city." 


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OLD  SLIP   MARKET.  103 

The  pay  of  the  "  Pablick  Whipper,"  some  twenty  years  before  this 
took  place,  is  noticed  in  the  following  entry,  dated  15th  January, 
1736 :  '*  To  Edward  Brenwen,  the  public  whipper  of  this  city,  X2  10, 
ia  full  for  1  qn  sallarry,  &  also  the  sum  of  15s*  for  setting  in  the 
pillory  ft  whipping  through't  the  Town,  at  a  cart's  tail,  one  Patrick 
Baiter  for  issueing  contrefetted  doUors,"  ftc«* 

The  pay  of  this  "publick"  officer  was  very  much  increased  in  1751, 
as  no  doubt  the  duties  of  the  office  had  become  more  onerous  and 
arduous  to  the  professed  office-seeker,  which  caused  an  advertise- 
ment as  follows:  "The  Public  Whipper  of  the  City  of  New  York, 
being  lately  dead,  if  any  person  inclines  to  accept  that  office,  with 
ifoefiUy  pounds  a  year,  he  may  apply  to  the  Mayor,  and  be  entered.''t 

A  few  years  after,  another  mode  of  punishing  criminals  is  no- 
tioed  in  the  same  paper,  January  25, 1768,  as  follows:  "One  John 
Clayton  Morris  was  committed  to  goal  of  this  city  for  aheep  steed- 
ing;  it  seems  he  had  successively  stole  four  or  five,  which  he  killed, 
and  retailed  in  the  markets.  On  a  search,  the  skins  were  found  in 
his  possession.  He  was  tried  last  week  at  our  Supreme  Court,  and 
found  guilty,  but  had  the  benefit  of  the  dergy  granted  him ;  was  burnt 
in  the  hand,  and  discharged.'' 

The  next  year,  (1769,)  on  the  14th  of  September,  the  "  Chronicle" 
says,  "  On  Tuesday  last  William  Smith  and  Daniel  Martin,  the  former 
for  stealing  a  quarter  of  lamb,  and  the  latter  for  stealing  fiddle- 
strings,  received  15  lashes  each  at  the  usual  place  of  flagellation.'' 

A  few  days  after,  Richard  Ely,  for  attempting  to  defraud  and 
cheat,  "was  exalted  on  a  wooden  horse  in  a  triumphal  car,  with 
labels  on  his  breast;  after  which  he  was  conducted  to  the  public 
whipping-post,  where  he  received  a  proper  chastisement." 

We  find  the  counterfeiter  was  more  severely  dealt  with,  as  the  fol- 
lowing will  show.  The  same  paper  on  the  15th  of  May,  same  year, 
says,  "On  Thursday  last,  one  John  Jubeart  was  committed  to  goal, 
for  passing  false  dollars.  Upon  examination  before  Alderman  6au- 
tier,  he  said  that  he  was  born  upon  Staten  Island,  and  followed  the 
bnsinees  of  a  tinker.  There  was  a  millinix  found  upon  him,  and  an 
instmment  which  he  said  he  used  to  straiten  gdn-barrels.  He  had 
passed  some  of  the  bad  dollars  in  this  city,  which  were  brought  in 
and  delivered  to  the  Alderman.  Upon  his  being  detected  and  threat- 
ttied  to  be  carried  before  a  magistrate,  he  endeavored  to  make  his 
escape,  and  went  into  the  *01d  Slip  Market,'  where  he  buried  some 
dollan  among  a  parcel  of  rubbish,  which  was  taken  up  by  some  peo- 
ple who  had  observed  him,  and  produced  at  his  examination. 

*'The  public  are  desired  to  oteerve,  that  the  mounts  upon  the  side 
•B«oordi»  tN.T.QaMtto,lUrch4,mL 


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104  OLD  SLIP   MARKET. 

of  these  false  dollars,  instead  of  being  raised,  are  indented,  and  the 
millinix  npon  the  edges  open,  and  distinguishable  from  a  genuine 
Spanish  dollar/' 

On  the  3d  of  Angust  he  was  found  guilty,  and  received  sentenoe 
of  death,  to  be  hanged  on  the  23d ;  but  was  respited  until  the  6th  of 
September,  "  when  he  was  executed  at  *  stone  fence,'  near  the  dtyJ* 

The  gold  and  silver  money,  although  scarce,  gave  considerable 
trouble  among  the  traders,  who  sometimes  differed  about  its  valuar 
tion ;  some  of  it  was  either  much  worn,  or  had  been  lessened  of  its 
weight  by  the  dishonest. 

The  question  of  its  valuation  came  up  before  the  Chamber  of  Com- 
merce on  the  3d  of  October,  same  year,  (1769,)  when  ''  it  was  unani- 
mously agreed,  that  all  the  members  will  receive  and  pay  the  under- 
mentioned gold  and  silver  coins  at  the  following  rates,  and  their 

lesser  denominations  in  the  same  proportions,  viz. : 

£.  B.  d. 
'*  A  Johannea,  weighing  eighteen  penny-weights,  for  -    6    8  0 

A  Moidore,  weighing  six  penny-weights  and  eight  grains, 

for 2    8  0 

A  CaroUne,  weighing  six  penny-weights  and  eight  grains, 

for 1  18  0 

A  Spanish  Doubloon^  or  4  pistole  pieces,  weighing  seven- 
teen penny-weights  and  eight  grains,  for    -        •        -    5  16  0 
A  Frefich  Pistole,  weighing  four  penny-weights  and  five 

grains,  for 18  0 

An  English  Ovinea,  weighing  five  penny-weights  and  six 

grains,  for 1  17  0 

A  French  Ghiinea,  weighing  five  penny-weights  and  five 

grains,  for 1  16  0 

A  Chequin,  weighing  two  penny-weights  and  five  grains, 

for 0  14  6 

An  English  Crown,  and  also  a  French  Crown,  cast        -    0    8  9 
An  English  Shilling,  Is.  9d. ;  a  Pistareen,  Is.  7d. 
"  That  for  every  grain  any  of  the  above  specified  gold  coins  shall 
weigh  less  than  the  above  respective  weights,  four-pence  must  be  de- 
ducted therefrom.    (Signed,)  Anthony  Van  Dam,  Sec'y." 

The  paper  currency  was  also  a  source  of  trouble  to  the  citizens; 
the  principal  part  in  circulation  was  Jersey  money,  which  appeared 
to  rank  higher  than  New  York  bills,  as  will  be  shown  from  the  pro- 
ceedings of  the  Chamber  of  Commerce,  March  3d,  1772.  At  this 
meeting  William  McAdam  stated,  "  Soon  after  the  establishment  of 
this  society,  I  proposed  to  your  consideration,  whether  it  was  for  the 
interest  of  the  community  that  Jersey  paper-money  should  pass  in 


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OLD   SLIP  MARKET.  105 

fhifl  province  higher  than  it  is  taken  for  in  «tihe  Treasury  of  the  prov- 
ince of  New  Jersey.  The  loss  and  inconvenience  arising  to  the 
traders  in  this  city,  from  the  present  practice  of  passing  Jersey 
money  for  more  than  its  acknowledged  value  by  their  own  Legisla- 
tore,  will,  I  hope,  plead  my  excuse  for  receiving  my  proposal.  That 
this  Corporation  may  enter  into  an  agreement  to  fix  a  time  when 
they  will  no  longer  depreciate  their  own  currency  by  accepting  that 
of  another  abof  e  par. 

^  I  therefore  propose  that  a  time  be  fixed  that  this  Corporation 
do  agree  to  pay  and  receive  Jersey  money  at  the  same  rate  it  is  re- 
ceived and  paid  in  their  own  treas^y." 

This  proposition  was  referred  to  further  meetings;  however,  on 
the  5th  of  November  following,  a  resolution  was  passed,  "  that  it  be 
received  on  the  same  terms  that  it  passes  for  in  New  Jersey ;  that 
is  to  say: 

"A  bill  of  £6  proclamation  money  for  $16,  or  £6   8  N. Y.  currency, 
A  bill  of  X3  "  "  8,  or    3    4 

AbiUofjCllO        "  "  4,  or    112 

A  bill  of  15s.  "  "  2,  or    0  16  " 

and  in  like  proportion  for  bills  of  a  less  denomination,"  which  was 
to  take  place  "from  and  after  3d  of  September  following,  (1773.") 
This  resolution  was,  however,  rescinded,  in  consequence  of  its  un- 
popularity, at  a  meeting  held  on  the  following  7th  of  December. 

"Rivington"  came  out  with  an  editorial  on  the  20th  January, 
1774,  saying,  "  Jersey  Bills  are  now,  in  the  general  course  of  trade, 
restored  to  the  old  standard  at  which  they  were  ever  current  in  this 
province,  viz. :  Bills  of  one  aktUing,  at  thirteen  pence;  those  of  one 
pound  ten  shiUtngs,  at  thirty-tvH)  ahiUings  and  stapencef  Ac.  At  these 
rates  they  are  freely  taken,  either  for  goods,  or  to  purchase  the  best 
Bills  of  Exchange  in  our  city."* 

From  the  following  advertisements,  we  glean  some  further  facts 
relative  to  the  currency  of  that  period :  "Jacob  Remsen  has  for  sale 
besides,  beef,  pork,  flour,  and  bread,"  "  and  a  parcel  of '  wampum,'t 
(or  Indian  currency. Y^  "  Lost  or  mislaid,  on  the  first  of  this  inst.,  in 
the  *  Oswego  {Broadway)  Market,'  3  thirty  shilling  Jersey  Bills ;  one 
6  and  6  penny  do.,  2  18  penny  do.,  in  a  blue  paper.  Two  dollars  re- 
ward, and  no  questions  asked ;  it  being  lost  by  a  poor  man,  and  the 
money  not  belong^ing  to  him."^  The  next  refers  to  oounterfeit 
money.  "The  public  are  hereby  notified  that  there  are  now  passing 
among  us  a  number  of  oounterfeit  Jersey  twelve  shilling  bills,  dated 
December  81, 1768,  signed  Johnson,  Smithy  and  Skinner.    They  are 

*  Gftsetteer.  f  <*  Gazette  and  Weekly  Port  Baj,''  lUreh  13, 1768. 

X  K  Y.  Mercury,  September  14, 1767. 


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106  OL^  BLIP   MARKET. 

printed  with  common  tjspes,  but  so  badly  executed  as  to  be  easily 
discovered  on  close  inspection.  Twelve  shilling  bills  made  out  of 
three  shilling  bills  have  also  appeared  in  this  city  lately."*  "  Lost 
or  stolen,  last  Monday,  between  the  North  River  and  '  Coenties  Mar- 
ket/ a  worked  pocket-book  lined  with  read ;  had  in  it  cash,  1  bill 
New  York  currency,  old  emmission ;  2  of  forty  shillings  ditto,''  &c.t 

The  next  will  diow  the  ridicule,  as  also  the  value  of  a  Congress 
bill,  by  the  royal  editor  "  Rivington,"  in  his  "  Royal  Gazette,"  De- 
cember 22d,  1779 :  "  Monday  se'night  was  offered  for  public  sale^  at 
the  Coffee-House,  a  Congress  bill  of  70  dollars ;  the  &rst  bidder  of- 
fered three  shillings  New  Yorl^  currency  for  it,  the  next  6d.  more, 
and  it  went  on  at  6d.  more  till  6s.  6d.  The  bidders  began  then 
with  coppers,  and  came  up  to  7s.  and  3  coppers ;  at  last  they  offered 
farthings,  and  the  70  dollar  bill  was  knocked  off  for  eight  shillings 
and  three-pence  half-penny." 

After  the  "Revolution,"  we  find  "Indian  money"  yet  for  sale:  the 
N.  Y.  Packet,  May  11, 1786,  gives  notice  to  "any  person  desirous  of 
purchasing  a  quantity  of  Indian  Corn,  may  be  supplied  by  applying 
to  Nicholas  Hoffman  &  Son,  No.  12  Little  Dock  Street,  where  also 
may  be  had  a  quantity  of  Hack  and  white  wampum^  pipes  and  shells." 

In  the  preparations  for  the  Jtevclution,  the  city  was  laid  out  into 
districts  or  company  beats:  No.  20  is  noticed  as  "beginning  at  Mr. 
John  Siemens',  fronting  the  corner  of  the  Old  Slip  Market,  running 
down  to  the  East  River ;  then  from  said  Siemens'  along  Queen  Street 
to  the  comer  of  Smith  Richards,  and  then  down  King  Street  to  the 
East  River,  taking  in  Dock  and  Water  Streets  below."  This  beat 
was  commanded  by  Oliver  Templeton  and  Garret  Kettletas."t 

The  next  year,  this  market  is  noticed  in  connection  with  a  horrid 
murder,  which  took  place  near  by  it,  which  appears  in  the  "  Penn» 
Evening  Post,"  and  reads,  "On  Sunday  last,  July  7, 1776,  a  number 
of  felons,  confined  in  the  New  Goal,  attempted  to  escape.  The  ring- 
leader, it  seems,  is  one  Armstrong,  a  murderer,  of  whom  wo  have 
the  following  account,  viz. :  That  he  was  a  deserter  from  the  Regu- 
lars at  Boston,  and  entered  himself  in  one  of  our  Rifle  Companies 
before  that  place;  that  he  was  a  remarkable  wicked,  disorderly, 
desperate  fellow ;  that  some  months  ago,  soon  after  the  arrival  of 
the  army  from  Boston,  he  broke  into  the  house  of  Mr.  Jacob  Pozer, 
at  Whitehall,  and  took  from  thence  all  his  wearing  apparel;  same 
night  he  went  into  the  house  of  Mr.  James  Meldrum,  at  the  (Old) 
^  Slip  Market/  when  most  of  the  family  were  in  bed ;  that  a  young 
woman  of  the  house  asked  his  buainess,  and  desired  him  to  walk  out, 

^  N^T.  Joanial,  April  1»,  1770.  t  Guette,  Maroh  23, 1778. 

}  Prov.  CoograH,  Aogust  22, 1776. 


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OLD  SLIP   MARKET.  107 

which  he  refused,  and  attempted  to  take  hold  of  her,  when  she  threat- 
ened to  scald  him  with  hot  water  from  a  tea-kettle,  and  endeavored 
to  leaye  the  room ;  that  he  followed  her  and  stmck  the  edge  of  a 
tomahawk  into  her  skull,  of  which  she  instantly  died;  that  he  then 
mshed  out  of  the  house,  was  pursued  by  the  men  of  die  house  and 
others,  who,  by  the  assistance  of  the  watch,  secured  him.  That  at 
the  last  Supreme  Court,  he  was  brought  on  his  trial  for  the  murder, 
but  there  not  being  a  jury  to  be  had,  he  was  remanded  till  the  next 
session ;  that  having,  with  a  number  of  confederates,  formed  a  con- 
spiracy to  escape,  on  Sunday  afternoon  he  fired  a  pistol  at  the 
sentry,  which  luckily  missed  him ;  that  he  seized  the  sentry's  gun 
and  knocked  him  down  with  it,  and  then  wrenched  a  sword  from 
the  hands  of  Mr.  Sheriff  Boberts,  who  was  endeavoring  to  quell  the 
mutiny,  just  going  to  plunge  it  in  his  body,  when  the  sergeant  of  the 
guard  saved  him,  by  shooting  the  villain  through  the  head." 

The  days  of  prosperity  of  this  lingering  old  market-house  appear 
at  that  time  to  have  been  drawing  to  a  close,  as  I  find  it  but  seldom 
noticed ;  although  as  late  as  the  year  1778,  it  appears  to  have  been 
in  existence,  as  we  learn  firom  Holt's  N.  Y.  Journal,  August  24th, 
where  it  was  noticed  in  connection  with  a  very  large  fire  as  follows: 
"  The  fire  began  on  Monday  morning  about  1  o'clock,  the  3d  inst., 
at  the  house  of  Mr.  Stewart,  on  Cruger's  Dock,  (ruw  Front  Street;) 
that  it  consumed  all  the  houses  between  'Coenties'  and  the  'Old 
Slip  Market,'  from  the  water-side  to  Dock  (Pearl)  Street."  Another 
account  says,  the  "fire  broke  out  in  the  store  of  Mr.  Jones,  ship  chand- 
ler, on  Gruger's  Wharff,  and,  notwithstanding  the  utmost  efforts  of 
the  Navy,  Army,  and  inhabitants,  soon  consumed  all  the  buildings 
on  the  east,  south  and  west  end  of  said  wharff,  and  every  house  on 
the  south  side  of  Little  Dock  ( Water)  Street.  The  street  being  nar^ 
row,  the  flames  soon  communicated  to  the  north  side  of  Little  Dock 
Street,  and  consumed  the  whole  (five  houses  excepted)  at  the  west 
end.  The  fire  soon  caught  the  back  buildings  in  Dock  Street,  and 
burnt  every  house  to  the  east  of  Mr.  Isaac  Low's,  as  fiftr  as  the  Old 
Slip,  and  three  opposite  the  Slip."*  The  next  issue  states  those  who 
suffered  from  loss,  as  follows:  '*  Col.  William  Bayard,  6  houses  and 
store  that  rented  for  £520,  (this  worthy  gentleman  suffered  greatly 
in  the  fire  of  September,  1776.)  Messrs.  John  and  Henry  Cruger,  6 
houses;  Mr.  Gerardus  Duyckinck,  7  houses;  Mr.  Peter  Mesier,  2 
dwelling-houses,  (this  family  and  their  relations  have  lost  in  the 
course  of  28  months  no  less  than  15  houses  and  stores,  some  of  them 
large  and  elegant  buildings,)  and  Mr.  David  Provoost,  4  houses,  and 
2  pulled  down ;  Oapt  Thomas  Brown,  4  houses ;  Mr.  Yarack,  1  house; 
*  N.  T.  Guette,  Angoit  3,  m& 


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108  OLD   SLIP   MARKET. 

estate  of  Mr.  Andrew  Myer,  1  house ;  Mr.  Henry  Van  Vleck,  1  house ; 
Mr.  Samuel  Schuyler,  2  houses ;  Mr.  Thomas  Doughty,  1  house ;  Mr. 
Isaac  Low's  house,  and  that  of  Mr.  Lawrence  Eortwright,  adjoining, 
greatly  damaged;  Capt.  Deale,  2  houses;  Mr.  Edmund  Seaman,  2 
houses ;  Mr.  Andrew  Breasted,  3  houses ;  Mr.  Humphrey  Jones,  1 
house ;  Dr.  Van  Solingen,  1  house ;  Mr.  Richard  Ten  Eyck,  baker, 

1  house ;  Mr.  Wandelham,  1  house ;  Mr.  James  Wells,  a  house  and 

2  stores;  Mr.  Benjamin  Moore,  1  house;  Mr.  Benjamin  Davis,  1 
house;  Mrs.  P.  De  Lanceys,  1  house;  Mrs.  Ten  Eyck,  2  dwelling- 
houses  and  several  stores.'' 

Another  account  of  this  fire  is  taken  from  a  letter,  dated  at  "  Camp 
at  the  White  Plains,  August  8, 1778,"  which  says,  "  Yesterday  came 
out  from  thence  (New  York)  two  Hessian  officers,  (who  deserted,)  lefk 
the  city  about  8  o'clock  in  the  evening,  the  6th  inst.,  and  passed 
King's  Bridge  about  one  in  the  morning.  One  of  them,  a  handsome 
young  fellow,  whose  brother  is  aid-de-camp  to  Gen.  Clinton,  tells  me 
he  saw  the  fire.  That  it  began  in  a  house  filled  with  king's  stores; 
68  houses  and  a  vast  quantity  of  stores,  amongst  which  80,000  blankets 
or  pairs  of  blankets,  I  think  the  latter ;  10,000  suits  of  cloaths,  and 
a  great  deal  of  provisions,  computed  at  four  weeks'  supply."* 

David  Grim  says,  in  addition,  "  The  cause  of  so  many  houses 
(about  300)  burned  at  this  time,  was  the  military  officers  tsJcing  the 
ordering  and  directions  of  this  fire  from  the  firemen;  the  citizens 
complained  to  the  Commander-in-Chief,  who  immediately  gave  in 
general  orders,  that  in  future,  no  military  man  should  interfere 
with  any  fire  that  may  happen  in  the  city." 

The  Major-General  commanding,  in  a  proclamation,  says,  "  Many 
of  the  inhabitants  suspected  that  this  fire  was  not  the  efifect  of  acci- 
dent, but  design ;"  which  induced  him  to  offer  a  reward  of  one  hun- 
dred guineas  on  conviction  of  the  offenders.  This  amount  was  in- 
creased by  a  somewhat  notorious  member  of  the  law,  (John  CoggU 
KnappJ  who  occasionally  showed  some  outward  liberality,  but 
whose  reputation  was  not  of  the  best.  He  promises  an  additional 
reward  of  twenty  guineas^  upon  the  same  terms  as  set  forth  by  the 
major-general  commanding. 

This  large  fire  was  followed  the  next  day  with  another  calamity, 
thus  noticed:  ''Last  Tuesday  afternoon,  about  one  o'clock,  during 
a  heavy  rain  accompanied  with  thunder,  the  lightning  struck  the 
Ordnance  Sloop  Morning  Star,  lying  off  the  Coffee-House,  (  Wall 
Street  J  in  the  East  River,  with  248  barrels  of  gunpowder  on  board ; 
it  produced  a  most  tremendous  explosion.  A  number  of  houses  were 
unroofed,  many  windows  broke,  and  some  furniture  demolished  by 
*  Feonft.  Packet,  AuBoit  16, 1778. 


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GOBNTIES   SLIP   MARKET.  IQQ 

the  blast ;  the  effects  of  which  were  similar  to  an  earthquake.  Hap- 
pily there  was  only  one  man  in  the  vessel  when  the  accident  hap- 
pened/'* who  perished;  the  other  part  of  the  crew  being  on  shore, 
fortunately  escaped. 

At  this  period  an  extract  of  a  letter  says,  *'  The  inhabitants  are 
most  distressed  at  their  present  situation,  and  a  vast  many  want  to 
take  their  chance  in  the  country,  but  cannot  obtain  permission,  "t 
Their  situation  continued  to  grow  worse,  and  in  the  long,  severely 
cold  winter  of  1779-80,  caused  an  inefficient  supply  of  both  provi- 
sions and  fire-wood.  *'  Fuel  was  so  scarce  (aaya  a  voriter)  that  gar^ 
den  fences,  old  sheds,  Ac,  were  taken  down  to  supply  the  want  of 
cord-wood.  Provisions  were  as  scarce  as  fuel.  Everybody,  except 
the  rich  and  the  dissolute,  was  put  upon  short  allowance.  Potatoes 
were  sold  for  a  guinea  per  bushel  I  while  biscuits,  made  of  oatmeal, 
as  coarse  and  containing  as  little  nourishment  as  ground  straw, 
were  served  out  to  the  (British)  troops.  Early  in  the  spring  the 
Cork  Fleet  arrived,  and  brought  provisions  in  abundance.  Fine 
rose  butter  was  sold  immediately  at  2s.  2d.  per  lb.,  and  almost  every- 
body was  soon  relieved  and  made  comfortable.''^ 

No  doubt  among  the  "old  £iheds,"  &c.,  this  then  old  and  unused 
market-house  was  torn  down  and  taken  for  fire-wood,  as  I  find  no 
further  notice  of  it. 


"COENTIES  SLIP  MARKET." 

1691.  The  establishment  of  this  market-place  took  place,  no 
doubt,  from  the  fact,  that  after  the  "  Oreat  Dock"  had  been  made, 
it  excluded  many  of  the  fishing  craft  firom  landing  at  that  old  place, 
andi  of  course,  changed  their  location  above  the  dock.  There  the 
large  vessels  could  lay  in  a  well-protected  cove,  and  the  smaller 
ones  were  drawn  upon  the  beach  or  strand  near  the  attractive  pub- 
lic-house, kept  many  years  before  by  Mary  Polet,  commonly  known 
as  Long  Mary. 

The  first  notice  in  the  "Records"  of  the  establishment  of  this  noted 
marketrplace  was  on  the  15th  of  July,  1691,  when  the  authorities 
designate  where  Fhsh  Meat  shall  be  sold,  and  adds,  "  Fish  to  be 
brought  into  the  dock,  over  against  the  City  Hall,  or  the  house 
that  JLonjr  Mary  formerly  lived." 

•  N.  T.  Gazette.  Ad^cusI  10, 1778.  f  Penna.  Packet,  Augoit  15, 177& 

X  Pampbleta,  Mo.  28S,  p.  67,  &  Society. 


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110  OOBNTIES  SLIP  MARKET. 

Long  Mary  must  hare  been  quite  a  character  in  her  day,  as  I  find 
her  name  often  noticed,  as  early  as  the  year  1671.  In  that  year  a 
committee  was  appointed  '^  to  take  a  view  of  the  corner  waal  ^n^^ 
the  Towne  is  to  make  before  the  house  of  Ixmg  Mary's;^*  and  a  few 
months  after,  *'  the  Court  do  allow  to  the  karmen,  for  the  work  done 
for  the  Towne  in  filling  up  the  Wharfe  before  Long  Marias,  eight 
stivers  per  load"  for  gravel.  No  doubt  her  person  and  well-kept 
house  attracted  the  attendants  at  the  Oity  Hall,  the  fishermen  and 
others,  who  resorted  there,  and  being  very  tall,  she  acquired  the 
name  of  Long  Mary  with  her  numerous  visitors. 

The  old  Stadt  House,  or  City  Hall,  stood  near  by  on  the  line  of 
Pearl  Street,  opposite  the  Coenties  Slip,  which  fact  is  well  authen- 
ticated. It  was  originally  built  for  a  large  City  Tavern,  of  which 
parts  were  used  by  the  officers  of  the  W.  I.  Company ;  soon  after  it 
became  known  as  the  State  House  or  City  Hall,  where  the  Schout 
Burgomasters  and  Schepens  held  their  sessions;  then,  at  a  later 
period,  the  Mayor,  Recorder,  and  Aldermen,  with  the  Courts  of  Jus- 
tice and  Prisons;  and  near  this  market-place,  on  the  shore,  were 
many  of  the  necessary  implements  of  punishment.  We  find  on  the 
20th  of  October,  1691,  that  it  was  "Ordered,  that  the  Sheriff"  imme- 
diately cause  a  ducking  stoole  to  be  built  upon  the  Wharf  before  the 
City  Hall,  and  goe  to  the  Treasurer  for  his  pay." 

This  marketrplace  having  been  established  for  the  exclusive  sale 
of  fish,  the  fishermen  usually  sold  from  their  boats  and  canoes  on  the 
few  market-days  then  allowed,  except  in  their  fishing  seasons,  when 
they  provided  sheds  or  other  covering,  while  salting  and  laying  up 
stores  for  the  inhabitants ;  and  the  business  increased  so  fast  that  it 
became  soon  after  known  as  the  "  Great  Pish  Market." 

We  find  at  this  early  period  the  various  kinds  of  fish  were  usually 
very  plentiful  and  cheap,  particularly  shell-fish,  which  were  caught 
in  abundance  along  the  shores  in  every  direction.  So  quiet  was  the 
harbor,  that  whales  came  up  to  the  city  and  visited  both  the  East 
and  North  Rivers.  Several  were  taken  near  the  city  at  different  in- 
tervals, as  will  be  shown,  with  several  other  interesting  facts  connect* 
ed  with  the  subject  of  fish.  In  another  part  of  this  work  is  noticed  the 
description  given  by  Van  der  Donk  of  the  stranding  of  two  whales 
up  the  North  River.  From  the  "  Boston  News  Letter,"  dated  Feb- 
ruary 24,  1707,  we  find,  "  Last  week  a  whale,  about  40  feet  long, 
was  struck  a  few  miles  to  the  eastward  of  this  city,  and  afterwards 
passed  thro'  the  harbour,  and  was  killed  in  the  Hudson  River  and 
brought  down  hither,  where  she  is  exposed  to  view."  Then,  in  an 
address  made  by  Lord  Combury  to  the  Board  of  Trade,  in  July,  1708, 
he  says,  "  The  quantity  of  train  oyl  made  in  Long  Island  is  uncer- 


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C0ENTIE8  SLIP    MARKET.  m 

tab ;  some  years  they  have  much  more  fish  than  others ;  for  example, 
last  year  they  made  four  thousand  barrils  of  oyl,  and  this  season 
they  haye  not  made  above  six  hundred:  about  the  middle  of  Octo- 
ber they  begin  to  look  out  for  fish ;  the  season  lasts  all  November, 
December,  January,  February,  and  part  of  March :  a  yearling  {whale) 
will  make  about  forty  barrils  of  oyl,  a  stunt  or  whale  two  years  old 
will  make  sometimes  fifty,  sometimes  sixty  barrils  of  oyl,  and  the 
largest  whale  I  ever  knew  of  in  these  parts,  yielded  one  hundred 
and  ten  barrils  of  oyl,  and  twelve  hundred  weight  of  bone.  There 
might  be  good  improvement  made  in  the  fishery  of  codfish  A  mack- 
eril ;  but  fish  of  several  sorts  is  so  plenty  in  the  river  and  bay  be- 
fore the  city,  that  our  people  will  not  take  the  pains  to  go  to  sea."^ 

Samuel  Mufibrd  also  gives  interesting  information  in  his  testi- 
mony on  the  whale  fishery  in  1716,  when  he  says,  ''  It  hath  been  a 
custom  for  above  60  years  (several  years  before  New  York  was  sub- 
jected to  the  crown  of  England)  for  their  Migesties'  subjects  on  the 
east  end  of  Long  Island,  then  belonging  to  Connecticut  Colony,  to 
go  out  upon  the  seas  adjacent  to  their  land,  six  men  in  a  small  boat, 
to  take  and  kill  whales  and  other  fish,  and^  the  captors  to  have  all 
they  killed  brought  on  shore  with  wind  and  sea/'t  There  also  ap- 
pears at  an  early  period,  an  "Agreement  made  the  4th  of  January, 
1669,  between  y^  Whale  Companies  of  East  and  South  Hampton. 
If  any  Companie  shall  find  a  dead  whale  upon  the  shore,  killed  by 
y«  other,  a  person  bringing  the  news  to  bee  well  rewarded.  And  if 
one  Companie  shall  find  any  whale  so  killed  at  sea,  they  shall  en- 
deavor to  secure  them  and  have  one-half  for  their  pains,  and  any 
irons  (harpoons)  found  in  them  to  bee  returned  to  y«  owner."J 

In  the  year  1721,  a  proposition  was  made  by  Josiah  Quincy  to 
supply  the  New  York  markets  with  fresh  fish.  He  presents  a  peti- 
tion to  the  Corporation  on  the  8th  July,  1721,  "praying  for  land  at 
or  near  Kingbridge  to  erect  a  fishery,  with  liberty  to  fish  in  the 
river  at  that  place;  and  proposes  to  supply  the  markets  at  New 
York  with  fish  very  fresh  and  at  very  easy  rates,  and  in  payment, 
rendering  therefore  yearly,  on  every  fourteenth  day  of  October,  to 
this  Corporation  a  good  dish  of  fresh  fish  J^^ 

The  "Journal  of  the  General  Assembly"  shows  an  Act  was  passed, 
in  the  month  of  April,  1726,  "to  entitle  Letvts  Sector  Piot  Be  Lan- 
gloiserie  to  the  sole  fishery  of  porpoises  in  the  Province  of  New  York, 
during  the  term  of  ten  years."  The  length  of  this  gentleman's  name 
DO  doubt  was  taken  in  consideration,  when  the  length  of  time  was 
given  to  him  for  this  value(le88)able  right,  that  he  might  retire  on 

*  Doo.  H!8t,  Tol.  ▼.  t  I>oc  Hist  N.  T.,  toL  L,  {k  S72. 

I  Thonpoon's  L.  I.  ^  Ciij  Becorda 


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112  COENTIES   SLIP  MARKET. 

the  proceeds,  and  be  no  longer  doomed  to  sign  his  name  to  the  many 
docoments  called  for  in  that  business. 

An  intelligent  writer  gives  a  good  article  on  fish  and  oysters, 
which  is  found  in  the  "Independent  Reflector,  November  22, 1753 ;'' 
he  says,  "Tho'  we  abound  in  no  one  kind  of  fish  sufficient  for  a  staple, 
yet  such  is  our  happiness  in  this  article,  that  not  one  of  the  colonies 
affords  a  fish-market  of  such  a  plentiful  variety  as  ours.  BoatonhaA 
none  but  sea-fish,  and  of  these  Philaddphia  is  entirely  destitute,  be- 
ing only  furnished  with  the  fish  of  a  fresh-water  river.  New  York 
is  sufficiently  supplied  with  both  sorts.  Nor  ought  our  va3t  plenty 
of  oysters  to  pass  without  particular  observation ;  in  their  quality 
they  are  exceeded  by  those  of  no  country  whatever.  People  of  all 
ranks  amongst  us,  in  general,  prefer  them  to  any  other  kind  of  food. 
Nor  is  anything  wanting,  save  a  little  of  the  filings  of  copper,  to 
render  them  equally  relishing,  even  to  an  English  palate,  with  the 
best  from  Cdchesier.  They  continue  good  eight  months  in  the  year, 
and  are,  for  two  months  longer,  the  daily  food  of  our  poor.  Their 
beds  are  within  view  of  the  town,  and  I  am  informed  that  an  oyster- 
man,  industriously  employed,  may  clear  eight  or  ten  shillings  a  day. 
Some  gentlemen,  a  few  years  ago,  were  at  the  pains  of  computing 
the  value  of  this  shell-fish  to  our  province  in  general.  The  esti- 
mate  was  made  with  judgment  and  accuracy,  and  their  computation 
amounted  to  ten  thousand  pounds  per  annum.  Their  increase  and 
consumption  are  since  very  much  enhanced,  and  thus  also  their  ad- 
ditional  value  in  proportion.  I  confess  it  has  often  given  me  great 
pleasure  to  reflect,  how  many  of  my  poor  countrymen  are  comforta- 
bly  supplied  by  this  article,  who,  without  it,  could  scarcely  subsist, 
and  for  that  reason  beg  to  be  excused  for  the  length  of  this  reflec- 
tion on  so  humble  a  subject,  tho'  it  might  justly  be  urged  to  the 
honour  of  oysters,  that,  considered  in  another  view,  they  are  service- 
able both  to  our  king  and  country." 

Following  up  the  taking  of  whales,  we  find  in  the  N.  Y.  Oazette, 
December  11, 1752,  says,  "Last  Saturday  a  whale,  forty-five  feet  long, 
ran  ashore  at  Yan  Buskirk's  point  at  the  entrance  of  the  KHis  from 
our  bay,  when  being  discovered  by  the  people  from  Staten  Island,  a 
number  of  men  went  off  and  killed  him,  and  may  now  be  seen  at  Mr* 
John  Waters',  at  the  Perry-house  on  Staten  Island." 

Then  the  same  "paper"  at  a  later  period,  (April  18, 1756,)  says, 
"On  last  Tuesday,  5,751  shad  were  caught  at  one  draught  on  the 
west  side  of  Long  Island."    Enormous! 

"  We  hear,"  says  the  Oazette  and  Weekly  Post  Boy,  September 
4,  1766,  "that  on  Monday,  (September  1,)  Mr.  Holman,  of  Elizabeth- 
town,  N.  J.,  with  five  other  men  and  two  boys,  being  out  a-fishing,  di^ 


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COENTIES  SLIP  IIARKET.  II3 

covered  a  whale  swimming  about,  near  Coney  Island,  on  which  soon 
after  it  ran  ashore,  and  before  it  could  get  off,  they  came  up  and 
killed  it  with  a  rusty  sword,  that  happened  to  be  on  board  the  ves- 
sel. We  are  told  Mr.  (Saml.)  Waldron  at  the  Ferry,  opposite  this 
city,  on  Long  Island,  has  bought  it,  (for  about  £20,)  and  that  it  is 
now  brought  up  to  that  place:  it  is  said  to  be  forty-nine  feet  in 
length,  and  that  if  cut  up,  would  produce  about  seventy  barrels  of 
oyl." 

Occasionally  a  short  supply  of  oil  (or  oyl,  or  oyle,  as  it  was  spelled 
in  the  '*  olden  time,")  was  found  for  the  city's  use ;  an  instance  of  this 
character  occurred  a  few  years  after,  when  there  was  none  to  light 
the  public  lamps  for  a  period  of  about  three  months.  A  citizen  asks 
the  question,  through  the  N.  Y.  Journal,  (October  8, 1772,)  "  Why 
the  publick  lamps  in  this  city  have  not  been  lighted  for  these  three 
months  past,  when  a  tax  is  levied  for  that  purpose?"  It  is  answered 
in  the  next  paper,  (October  15,)  through  the  editor,  as  if  coming  from 
the  Corporation,  as  follows:  '^  You  are  desired  by  the  Corporation 
to  answer  the  question  of  the  citizen,  by  informing  him  that  no  oil 
was  to  be  had." 

Among  the  news  dated  New  York,  October  25,  in  the  New  Hamp- 
shire Gazette,  November  5,  1773,  which  says,  "Several  days  last 
week  a  large  whale  was  seen  in  the  North  as  well  as  the  East  River, 
near  the  city."  Since  this  period  several  have  been  taken  near  our 
harbor,  and  towed  up  to  the  city  for  exhibition ;  the  last  noticed 
was  on  the  25th  of  April,  1857,  when  the  "Herald"  says,  "Captain 
Cobb,  of  the  fishing  schooner  Wm.  Riley,  and  Captain  Harris,  of 
schooner  B.  F.  Brotcn,  while  cruising  off  Sandy  Hook  on  Saturday 
last,  came  in  contact  with  a  stranger,  which  proved  to  be  a  right 
whale.  Preparation  was  immediately  made  for  his  capture,  and  in 
about  three  hours  the  prize  was  taken.  He  was  immediately  towed 
to  Staten  Island,  where  he  was  cut  up,  and  yesterday  the  blubber 
and  bone  were  brought  to  the  city.  The  tohale  measured  48  feet  in 
length,  10  feet  across  the  breast,  and  will  yield  about  40  barrels  of 
oil  and  five  hundred  pounds  of  bone." 

Reverting  again  to  this  market-place,  as  no  market-house  had  yet 
been  built  here,  until  we  find  from  the  orders  given  on  the  16th  of 
November,  1720,  to  have  the  "Custom-House  Bridge  Market"  taken 
down,  and  the  inhabitants  have  liberty  to  remove  the  old  market- 
house  to  a  more  convenient  place  near  the  water-side. 

The  Laws  published  this  year  do  not  yet  give  it  a  name,  but  de- 
scribe it  as  "at  the  slip  at  the  east  end  of  the  dock."    Ten  years 
after,  the  Laws  say  of  the  "  five  several  places"  to  hold  markets, "  One 
market  at  Coenties  Dock."    Then  on  Lyne's  Map  of  the  City,  pub- 
VoL,  L— 8 


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114  COENTIES   SLIP   MARKET. 

lished  in  1729,  it  is  noticed  as  the  ''Fish  Market,"  and  is  so  known 
on  all  the  early  maps. 

Two  years  after,  in  the  N.  Y.  Gazette,  dated  Angnst  28,  1782,  it 
appears  with  its  common  name,  although  differently  spelled,  in  an 
advertisement  of  William  Thnrston,  school-master,  dwelling  at  the 
corner  house  by  Eoenties  Market,  oyer  against  the  "Scotch  Arms;" 
and  the  reasonable  supposition  is,  that  if  the  school-master  was 
abroad  then,  he  would  hare  showed  his  teaming^  in  haying  the  name 
spelled  as  it  was  then  known. 

It  no  doubt  took  the  name  of  Coenties  from  a  wealthy  tanner  and 
shoemaker,  named  Coentract  Ten  Eyckey  who  owned  and  resided  on 
the  corner  of  now  Pearl  Street  by  the  side  of  this  market-place. 
The  Christian  names  of  the  inhabitants  were  then  mostly  used,  and 
for  shortness,  or  a  nickname,  no  doubt  this  was  given  him :  this  has 
been  pronounced  coornre^  cocmrtre^  coon-je,  or  eoenties. 

Its  proper  name  after  this  period  it  began  to  eigoy,  although 
variously  spelled,  as  will  be  shown  in  the  press  ''  of  the  olden  time," 
of  which  nearly  every  one  and  the  greater  part  of  the  advertisements 
and  other  notices  also  show,  that  the  market-places,  and  other  pub- 
lic places,  were  the  guide-posts  to  trace  out  individuality,  prior  to 
the  Revolution ;  after  that  period  the  houses  were  properly  number- 
ed. The  first  is  taken  from  the  N.  Y.  Weekly  Journal,  April  24, 
1734,  which  speaks  of  a  *'  House  to  be  sold  in  Duke  (Stone)  Street, 
fronting  the  alley  that  leads  to  Coentjies  Market  J^  The  same  paper, 
March  29, 1736,  says,  that  "  Stephen  Bayard  has  Muscovada  Sugar 
to  be  sold,  between  the  *01d  Slip  and  Eoentjies  Markets.'"  The 
Mercury,  May  13, 1754,  has  "  to  be  sold,  by  James  Jarvis,  next  door 
to  Doctor  William  Farqnar's,  between  Goenties  Market  and  the 
Long  Bridge,  (Broad  Street,)  a  variety  of  chints  and  callicoes.*' 
The  same,  August  11,  1755,  "By  Robert  Doyle,  pewterer,  at  the 
sign  of  the  Gilt  Dish,  in  Dock  (Pearl)  Street,  between  the  Old  Slip 
and  Coenties  Markets.''  **  Golden  and  Kelly,"  says  the  same  paper 
of  January,  1756,  have  for  sale,  "  at  their  store  near  Goentjies  Mar- 
ket," Ac.  In  the  Gazetteer,  July  16, 1759,  Thomas  Doughty  adver- 
tises "  to  be  sold,  cheap,  at  his  store  in  Dock  Street,  between  the 
(Old)  Slip  and  Goenties  Market."  The  "  Mercury,"  November  21, 
1763,  notices  a  sale  at  public  vendue, "  at  Goentjies  Market,  of  sugars 
&  Lisbon  wines."  The  "  Gazette  and  Weekly  Post  Boy,"  April  23, 
1766,  has  "  to  be  sold  at  public  vendue,  on  Friday,  the  4th  inst.,  at ' 
12  o'clock,  at  the  Goenties  Market,  twenty-five  hogsheads  of  Mus- 
covada Sugars."  Then,  in  the  Revolution,  we  find  in  the  N.  Y.  Ga- 
zette, January  12, 1778 :  "  Stolen  out  of  the  house  of  Henry  Minugh, 
in  Little  Dock  (Front)  Street,  near  Goenties  Market,  a  silver 


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GOBNTIES  SLIP  MARKET.  115 

watch;''  and  on  the  25th  of  May,  "A  negro  woman  to  be  sold  in 
Dock  Street,  between  Goenties  and  (Old)  Slip  Markets." 

At  this  period  the  Coenties  Market  did  not  stand  very  high,  ex- 
cept as  a  "Fish  Market;"  we  find,  however,  one  butcher  named 
Thomas  Cox,  in  March,  1737,  renting  one  stand,  for  one  year,  at  £2 ; 
and  the  next  year  bat  two  are  leased:  one  to  Samuel  Brown  at  JGI, 
and  the  other  to  Cox  at  £2  10.  Then,  in  the  month  of  May,  1740, 
Boelef  Van  Meppel  is  found  occupying  one  stand. 

This  Cox  was  unfortunately  killed  a  few  years  after,  the  account 
of  which  I  find  in  the  Weekly  Post  Boy,  October  28, 1745.  It  ap- 
pears that  a  young  man  had  been  aboard  of  the  Clinton  privateer, 
and  brought  off  two  pistols,  one  of  which  was  loaded; ''  he  set  down 
in  order  to  mend  the  flint;  in  doing  of  which  the  pistol  unhappily 
went  off,  and  shot  Mr.  Thomas  Cox,  butcher,  through  the  head — 
when  he  fell  dead  without  speaking." 

The  English  being  at  war  with  the  French,  privateers  were  in 
active  operation,  collecting  recruits  and  fitting  out  for  the  service, 
while  the  Government  vessels  of  war  that  lay  in  the  harbor  were  in 
the  habit  of  impressing  boatmen  an^  seamen  from  off  their  vessels 
when  they  arrived  in  port,  which  soon  had  the  effect  of  deterring 
the  market  and  other  vessels  from  coming  to  the  city,  and  occasion- 
ed a  short  supply  of  the  necessaries  of  life.  This  brought  forth  a  proc- 
lamation from  Sir  Peter  Warren,  which  appeared  in  the  Post  Boy, 
September  10, 1744:  "Whereas,  I  am  informed  that  several  boat- 
men and  others,  intending  to  come  to  the  market  of  New  York  with 
wood  and  other  necessaries,  have  been  under  apprehension  that  they 
should  be  impressed  for  his  Majestie's  service ;  I  do  hereby  give  no- 
tice, that  none  shall  be  impressed  but  such  as  belong  to  inward- 
bound  vessels  from  sea.  Given  under  my  hand,  on  board  his  Ma- 
jestie*8  ship  Launoeaton,  at  New  York,  the  24th  September,  1744. 

"Peter  Warren."* 

However,  this  impressment  did  take  place,  although  many  years 
after,  to  some  four  fishermen,  who  were  supplying  the  market  with 
fish.  They  were,  in  the  month  of  July,  1764,  "  seized  by  a  press- 
gang  in  the  harbor  and  carried  aboard  a  tender  (from  Halifax) 
which  lay  off  in  the  bay.  It  came  to  the  knowledge  of  some  of  the 
citizens,  who,  when  the  captain  came  on  shore  in  his  barge,  suddenly 
ussembled  and  seized  the  boat,  but  offered  no  ii\jury  to  the  captain.'' 
He  publicly  declared,  "he  gave  no  such  orders;  offered  to  release 
the  fishermen ;  and,  going  into  the  Goffee-House,  wrote  and  delivered 

*  *'  Sff  Peter  Warren,"  who^e  wife,  "  Ladj  Warren,'*  after  his  death,  long  redded  in 
titt  *'  old  Fan  JVe»9  hoose,"  jet  standing  between  Fourth  and  Bleeoker,  Charles  and 
Perry  Streets 


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116  COENTIES    SLIP   MARKET. 

an  order  for  that  purpose."  In  the  mean  time  some  of  the  people 
carried  the  boat  up  to  the  Fields,  (Park J  where  they  burnt  it;  and 
others  of  the  company  went  on  board  the  tender  with  the  captain's 
order,  and  brought  the  fishermen  on  shore. 

This  market-place  being  the  principal  fish  market  at  that  early 
period,  it  has  been  thought  not  improper  to  introduce  into  its  his- 
tory all  that  pertained  to  fish  among  the  sketches  noticed  in  its  his- 
tory. About  the  year  1748,  Professor  Kalm  says,  "Among  the  nu- 
merous shells  which  are  found  on  the  sea-shore,  there  are  some  which 
by  the  English  here  are  called  clams,  and  which  bear  some  resem- 
blance to  the  human  ear.  They  have  a  considerable  thickness,  and 
are  chiefly  white  except  the  pointed  end,  which,  both  without  and 
within,  has  a  blue  color,  between  purple  and  violet.  They  are  met 
with  in  vast  numbers  on  the  sea-shore  of  New  York,  Long  Island, 
and  other  places.  The  shell  contains  a  large  animal,  which  is  eaten 
both  by  the  Indians  and  Europeans  settled  here. 

"A  considerable  commerce  is  carried  on  in  this  article,  the  Dutch 
and  English  who  live  in  Long  Island  and  other  maritime  provinces. 
As  soon  as  the  shells  are  caught,  the  fish  is  taken  out  of  them,  drawn 
upon  a  wire,  and  hung  up  in  the  open  air,  in  order  to  dry  by  the 
heat  of  the  sun.  When  this  is  done,  the  flesh  is  put  into  proper  ves- 
sels, and  carried  to  Albany  upon  the  river  Hudson ;  there  the  In- 
dians buy  them,  and  reckon  them  one  of  their  best  dishes.  Besides 
the  Europeans,  many  of  the  native  Indians  come  annually  down  to 
the  sea-shore,  in  order  to  catch  clams,  proceeding  with  them  after- 
wards in  the  same  manner  I  have  just  described.  The  shells  of  these 
clams  are  used  by  the  Indians  as  money,  and  make  what  they  call 
their  wampum ;  they  likewise  serve  their  women  for  an  ornament, 
when  they  intend  to  appear  in  full  dress.  These  wampums  are 
properly  made  of  the  purple  parts  of  the  shells,  which  the  Indiana 
value  more  than  the  white  parts." 

Between  the  years  1768  and  the  breaking  out  of  the  Revolution, 

this  market-place  appeared  to  be  at  the  height  of  prosperity.    A 

large  amount  of  mercantile  business  was  transacted  both  at  public 

and  private  sale ;  and  the  more  particular  evidence  of  this  fact  is 

shown  by  the  citizens  of  this  (Dock)  Ward  asking  leave,  on  the  22d 

,  "  to  enlarge  Coenties  Market  at  their  own  expense  ;*' 

rish  it  to  be  recognized  as  one  of  the  meal  markets* 

nted  so  far  as  related  to  the  enlargement;  but  for 

icers  were  provided  with  two  other  places,  the  "Meal 

'  and  the  **  Broadway  Market;"  the  latter  afterwards 

>swego  Market. 

)d  after,  we  find  another  petition  from  the  inhabit- 


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COENTIBS   SLIP   MARKET.  117 

ants,  who  state  "that  they  have  famished  at  great  expense  the  addi- 
tion to  Coentjies  Market  for  the  use  of  the  country  people,  only  five 
feet  to  the  westward  of  the  old  market,  agreeable  to  the  directions 
of  the  committee;  yet  notwithstanding  said  expense,  much  beyond 
their  expectation — considering  the  irreparable  condition  of  the  old 
marke^hou8e,  which  is  daily  in  danger  of  falling — have  by  subscrip- 
tion raised  the  sum  of  fifty  pounds  towards  rebuilding  the  said  mar- 
ket upon  a  range  with  the  new  end  lately  finished."  They  wish  the 
Board  to  assist  them ;  and  while  the  subject  was  under  considera- 
tion, the  market-house  and  other  buildings  had  a  narrow  escape  of 
being  destroyed  by  fire  and  gunpowder,  of  which  the  "N.  Y.  Journal," 
January  22,  1772,  gives  the  following  account:  **At  the  late  fire 
(16th  inst.)  on  the  Dock,  (house  of  Mr.  John  Burna)  near  Coenties 
Market,  the  city  was  in  imminent  danger  of  a  most  dreadful  calamity, 
there  being  then  lodged  in  a  store-house,  joining  or  very  near  the 
fire,  a  large  quantity  of  gunpowder,  the  explosion  of  which  would 
probably  not  only  have  destroyed  most  of  the  buildings  near  the 
place,  but  hundreds  or  thousands  of  people  by  whom  the  docks  and 
streets  were  crowded." 

On  the  16th  of  April  following,  a  committee  was  appointed  "  to 
examine  and  view  in  what  condition  the  Coenties  Market  is  in,  and 
whether  any  necessarys  ought  to  be  made,  and  how  much,  and  make 
report  with  all  convenient  speed ;"  and  the  result  was,  that  they 
"  order  a  cover  to  be  made  over  the  fish  market  at  Coenties  Slip." 

For  many  years  the  fishermen  had  met  with  very  poor  success 
and  encouragement  in  bringing  fish  to  market,  which  had  caused 
the  business  to  be  neglected,  and  necessarily  a  short  supply  was 
the  result.  It  was  thought  some  public  assistance  ought  to  be 
given  to  encourage  the  fishery. 

The  General  Assembly  took  up  the  matter,  and  on  the  8th  of 
March,  1773,  passed  an  Act,  as  appears  from  the  proceedings  of 
the  Chamber  of  Commerce,  Tuesday,  April  6,  of  that  year.  "  Mr. 
Henry  White,  the  President,  stated  at  this  meeting,  that  the  House 
of  Assembly,  in  the  last  session,  did  grant  the  sum  of  £200  per 
annum,  for  five  years,  to  be  paid  to  the  Treasurer  of  this  Corpora- 
tion, for  the  encouragement  of  a  fishery  on  this  Coast,  for  the  bet- 
ter supplying  the  markets  of  this  City  with  Fish." 

A  committee  reported  the  following,  which  was:  "Resolved  and 
agreed,  that  the  following  premiums  be  paid  by  the  Treasurer  of 
the  Chamber  of  Commerce:"* 

To  the  Owners  and  Crew  of  any  Boat  or  Vessel,  who  shall  sup- 
ply this  market  with  the  greatest  quantity  of  Fish,  taken  on  the 

»  RiviDgton'8  N.  Y.  Gaitttcer.  April  29, 1773. 


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118  GOENTIES   SLIP   MARKET. 

Coast  with  Trawl  Nets,  (Raj  and  Skate  excepted,)  from  the  first  of 
May,  1773,  to  the  first  of  May,  1774,  the  sum  of  -        -        -    £40, 

To  the  same,  "for  the  next  greatest  quantity,"      -        -        £dO. 

To  the  same,  greatest  quantity  of  Codfish,  from  1st  November, 
1773,  to  the  Ist  May,  1774, jE30. 

To  the  same,  next  greatest  quantity,      ....        £20. 

To  the  same,  for  the  greatest  quantity  of  Live  Sheephead,  from 
the  Ist  May,  1773,  to  the  1st  May,  1774,      ....    £15. 

To  the  same,  for  the  greatest  quantity  of  Fresh  Mackerel,  from 
the  1st  of  May,  1773,  to  the  Ist  of  May,  1774,  -       -       -        jElO. 

On  the  4th  of  May  following,  the  "Chamber"  "Ordered,  that  all 
persons  who  mean  to  apply  for  the  aforesaid  premiums,  that  they 
do,  every  Fare  they  make,  carry  an  account  thereof  to  the  Sec'y 
of  the  Board  for  the  time  being,  who  is  to  keep  a  regular  account 
thereof;  and  that  the  persons  make  oath  before  a  mi^istrate  of  the 
quantity  brought  to  market  each  time,  if  required." 

The  next  year,  on  the  5th  of  July,  a  committee  from  the  "  Cham- 
ber," after  examining  the  various  parties  and  their  proofs,  offering 
for  the  premiums,  reported,  "  That  Peter  Parks  exhibits  ample  proof 
that  he  hath  brought  to  this  City,  and  exposed  to  sale  in  the  pub- 
lick  markets,  upwards  of  eight  hundred  Live  Cod-Fish"  within  the 
limited  time,  and  was  accordingly  paid  £80.  "That  Robert 
Heartshorne  exhibits  proof  that  he  hath  at  divers  times  between 
(the  same  dates)  brought  four  hundred  and  fifty-six  sheephead,"  and 
was  paid  <£20. 

These  are  all  that  were  noticed  as  having  been  awarded  pre- 
miums at  this  period.  They,  however,  on  the  14th  inst.,  renew  the 
premium  list,  and  make  several  alterations,  by  demanding  above 
certain  numbers  or  pounds  weight,  with  the  same  conditions  as  rep- 
resented in  their  first  list. 

The  sum  of  X50  is  offered  to  those  who  shall  supply  this  market 
with  the  greatest  quantity  of  fish,  not  less  than  seven  hundred  and 
fifty  pounds  weight;  and  <£20  for  the  next  greatest  quantity. 

The  sum  of  JG30  for  the  greatest  quantity  of  live  codfish,  not  less 
than  one  thousand  fish ;  and  X20  for  the  next  greatest  quantity. 

The  sum  of  £20  for  the  greatest  quantity  of  live  sheepdiead, 
not  less  than  one  thousand  fish;  and  JG15  for  the  next  greatest 
quantity,  not  less  than  seven  hundred  and  fifty ;  and  jGIO  for  the 
next  greatest  quantity,  not  less  than  five  hundred  fine  sheepshead. 

The  sum  of  XIO  for  the  greatest  quantity  of  fresh  mackerel,  not 
less  than  seven  thousand;  and  £5  for  the  next  greatest  quantity, 
not  less  than  five  thousand  mackerel. 

The  sum  of  <£20  for  the  greatest  quantity  of  dried  herrings,  from 
the  first  day  of  May,  1774,  to  the  1st  day  of  July,  1775. 


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COENTIES   SLIP   MARKET.  II9 

On  the  22d  of  June,  1775,  ''  Peter  Eetteltas,  Joseph  Bull,  Oar 
briel  H.  Ludlow,  and  Edward  Laight,  being  appointed  by  the 
Chamber  of  Commerce  to  examine  fishermen  clidms,  that  have 
famished  the  market  with  fish,  as  the  Corporation  thought  fit  to 
grant  a  bounty  upon:  Give  this  public  notice,  that  they  will  attend 
at  the  house  of  Mrs.  Brock,  on  Friday,  Monday,  and  Tuesday  next, 
at  11  o'clock,  when  all  persons  claiming  are  desired  to  attend  with 
their  proof."* 

The  breaking  out  of  the  Revolution  soon  afterwards,  put  an  end 
to  this  annual  awarding  of  premiums  through  the  Chamber,  al- 
though they  were  occasionally  called  upon  to  advise  and  assist  the 
authorities. 

The  great  preparations  for  the  war  caused  the  more  general  use 
of  the  city  on  the  East  River  side,  which  tended  to  drive  many  of 
the  fishing  and  other  vessels  on  the  North  River  side;  and  it  also 
assisted  to  destroy  much  of  the  trade  of  the  city. 

The  military  occupation  of  it  by  both  parties,  at  different  peri- 
ods, brought  forth  proclamation  and  orders,  which  were  issued  by 
those  in  power.  General  Putnam  issued  an  order,  dated  "  Head-Quar- 
ters, New  York,  April  8, 1776.  The  General  informs  the  inhabitants, 
that  it  is  become  absolutely  necessary  that  all  communication  be- 
tween the  ministerial  fleet  and  shore  should  be  immediately  stop- 
ped ;  for  that  purpose,  has  given  positive  orders,  the  ships  should 
no  longer  be  provided  with  provisions.  Any  inhabitants  or  others 
who  shall  be  taken  that  have  been  on  board,  will  be  considered  as 
enemies,  and  treated  accordingly.  All  boats  are  to  sail  from  Beek- 
man's  Slip :  Capt.  James  Alner  is  appointed  Inspector,  and  will 
give  permits  for  oystermen.  It  is  expected,  and  ordered,  that  none 
attempt  going  without  a  pass."  t 

On  the  17th  inst.  another  order  from  General  Putnam  follows  in 
Ae  "Gazette"  of  that  date.  He  says:  "In  order  that  it  may  be 
more  convenient  for  the  people  at  the  North  River,  His  Excellency, 
General  Putnam,  has  been  pleased  to  order  that  a  person  should  be 
appointed  there  to  give  permits  to  oyster-boats,  &c.,  going  down ; 
and  Mr.  Simon  Schermerhorn  is  appointed  for  that  purpose." 

The  next. day,  we  find  another  order  in  the  Penn"^  Evening 
Post,  signed  by  Horatio  Gates,  Acyutant-General :  "Whereas,  the 
Ada  (British  mavrof-war)  having  quitted  her  station,  and  left  the 
harbor,  the  navigation  between  this  city  and  New  Jersey,  by  the 
Kills,  is  become  quite  safe.  The  troops  upon  Staten  Island  and 
Bergen  Neck  are  to  let  all  boats  coming  to  New  York  or  returning 
to  Jersey,  to  pass  and  repass  without  molestation." 

•  Bivingtoa'fe  QftMlte,  July  14, 1774.  f  N.  T.  Packet,  April  IS,  1776. 


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120  COENTIES   SLIP   MARKET. 

The  same  "  paper,"  on  the  6th  of  August  following,  says, "  The 
public  are  desired  to  take  notice  that  no  person  whatever,  either 
male  or  female,  above  the  age  of  fourteen  years,  will  be  permitted 
to  pass  any  of  the  ferries  in  the  State  of  New  Jersey  without  a  prop- 
er pass  from  the  place  they  leave." 

Three  years  after,  the  city  being  in  possession  of  British  officers, 
fresh  provisions,  and  also  fresh  fish,  had  become  scarce,  and  the  mar^ 
kets  very  poorly  supplied ;  and,  by  way  of  encouragement,  the  mili- 
tary commandant  (through  the  Royal  Gazette,  April  12, 1779,)  gave 
"  Notice  that  permissions  will  be  granted  by  the  police  to  any  per^ 
sons  properly  recommended,  who  may  incline  to  employ  themselves 
in  fishing,  with  seines  or  otherwise,  any  where  within  the  protection 
of  his  Majesty's  ships,  for  the  purpose  of  supplying  the  markets  of 
this  city." 

Soon  after  the  military  commandant,  "  Major-General  Pattison,'' 
desires  the  "  Chamber  of  Commerce"  to  give  their  opinion  "respect* 
ing  the  expediency  of  regulating  the  markets  with  regard  to  the 
prices  to  be  paid  for  butchers'  meat,"  Ac.  This  subject  was  laid  be- 
fore this  body,  July  12, 1779,  when  a  committee  was  appointed,  and 
on  the  following  meeting  (lUth  July)  they  reported  as  follows: 
"  With  regard  to  regulating  the  prices  of  butchers'  meat,  experience 
justifies  our  apprehension  that  the  remedy  may  prove  worse  than  the 
disease ;  but  we  are  of  opinion,  that  limiting  the  time  of  butchers, 
greenwomen,  or  hucksters,  being  in  the  market,  may  be  attended 
with  very  good  effects.  We  therefore  beg  leave  to  recommend, 
that  no  butchers,  greenwomen,  poulterers,  sellers  of  vegetables,  or 
any  huckster,  to  be  in  the  market  (Saturday  afternoons  excepted) 
after  10  o'clock  in  the  morning,  from  the  month  of  April  to  Octo- 
ber; and  not  after  11  o'clock  the  remaining  part  of  the  year;  and 
that  no  fresh  provisions,  (fish  excepted,)  vegetables,  or  poultry  should 
be  suffered  to  be  put  into  stores  or  cellars,  on  penalty  of  being  for- 
feited for  the  use  of  the  Alms-House." 

Two  days  after  the  following  proclamation  was  issued  by  General 
Pattison :  "  Whereas  it  is  highly  expedient  that  further  regulations 
should  be  established  respecting  the  boats  and  small  craft  passing 
to  and  from  this  city :  I  have  therefore  thought  fit  to  order  and 
direct,  that  from  and  after  the  first  day  of  August  next,  all  boats 
and  small  craft  bringing  provisions,  fuel,  forage,  or  fish  to  this  city, 
and  other  market  supplies,  must  have  passes  from  the  office  of  police, 
specifying  the  names  of  the  persons  and  the  places  to  and  from  which 
they  are  to  pass  and  repass.  That  every  such  boat  or  small  craft  a^ 
shall  be  detected  without  such  pass,  or  in  going  to  or  coming  from 
any  place  or  places,  but  such  as  are  particularly  mentioned  in  their 


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GOENTIES   SLIP   MARKET.  121 

passes,  will  be  seized,  and  the  persons  found  therein  detained,  and 
are  to  be  reported  to  the  police,  in  order  that  the  same  may  be  laid 
before  the  commandant. 

"  That  any  person  or  persons  intending  to  bring  supplies  to  this 
city,  and  who  shall  obtain  a  pass  from  any  of  His  Majesty's  officers 
commanding  at  out-posts,  or  the  commanding  officer  on  Long  Island, 
or  from  the  Colonel  of  the  Militia  of  the  County  in  which  they  re- 
side, shall  be  permitted  to  bring  supplies  to  this  citj^,  either  by  land 
or  in  any  craft,  having  a  pass  aforesaid. 

"  That  every  person  or  persons  discovered  on  board  any  boat  or 
small  craft  coming  to  or  going  from  the  city,  without  such  pass  as 
aforesaid,  or  a  pass  from  the  office  of  police,  shall,  together  with 
said  boat  or  small  craft,  and  the  hands  thereunto  belonging,  be  de- 
tained and  reported  as  abovesaid. 

*'  That  from  and  after  the  publication  hereof,  all  boats  or  small 
craft  attempting  to  pass  from  this  city  after  dark,  and  before  gun- 
fire in  the  morning,  (except  such  as  are  in  His  Majesty's  service,) 
will  be  seized  by  the  gun-boats  and  forfeited,  and  the  persons  found 
therein  imprisoned. 

"  That  all  boats  or  small  craft  that  shall  be  discovered  passing  to 
this  city  after  dark  or  before  gun-fire  in  the  morning,  (except  such 
as  are  in  His  Majesty's  service,  or  that  are  coming  with  provisions, 
ftael,  forage,  fish,  or  supplies  for  the  market,  having  passes  for  that 
purpose,)  will  be  seized  and  forfeited,  and  the  persons  found  therein 
imprisoned  as  abovesaid. 

"  That  all  forfeitures  incurred  by  virtue  of  this  proclamation  shall 
be  divided :  one  moiety  thereof  to  the  person  or  persons  making  the 
seizure,  and  the  other  to  be  paid  into  the  hands  of  John  Smyth,  Es- 
quire, Treasurer  of  the  City  Fund,  for  the  use  of  the  poor. 

''Any  person  or  persons  ofiending  against  this  proclamation,  may 
depend  on  being  punished  with  the  utmost  rigor.  Given  under  my 
hand,  in  the  City  of  New  York,  the  twenty-second  day  of  July,  1779, 
and  in  the  nineteenth  year  of  His  Majesty's  reign.  James  Paitison. 

"  By  order  of  the  General,  John  L.  C.  Roome,  Secretary." 

^  During  the  whole  period  of  the  occupation  of  the  city  by  the 
British,  viz.,  from  1776  to  1783,"  (says  Mr.  King,)  "  the  Chamber 
seems  to  have  co-operated  very  zealously  with  the  British  authori- 
ties, naval  and  military ;  and  they  on  ^eir  part  seem  to  have  re- 
lied very  much  upon  the  influence  and  exertions  of  the  Chamber  to 
render  their  rule  of  the  city  easy  and  acceptable."* 

In  1781,  Mr.  Isaac  Low,  then  the  President  of  the  "Chamber  of 
Commerce,"  presented,  (on  the  8th  of  May,)  at  a  meeting  of  the 
*  History  of  the  **  Chamber  of  Commerce,"  by  Charles  King,  Esq. 


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122  GOENTIES   SLIP  MARKET. 

Board,  several  suggestions  in  relation  to  the  fishery.  He  says,  "  I 
am  directed  also  to  represent  the  fishery  upon  the  Banks  of  Shrews- 
bury as  an  object  of  great  importance  to  this  garrison ;  and  that  un* 
less  a  proper  armed  vessel  can  be  appointed  daily  to  protect  the 
fishermen  from  the  gun  and  whale  boats  that  are  preparing  npon  the 
adjacent  shores  to  attack  them,  they  will  find  it  totally  impractica* 
ble  to  pursue  that  business."  This  subject  was  addressed  to  His 
Excellency  Mar\ot  Arbuthnot,  Esq.,  Admiral,  &c. ;  whose  answer  is 
as  follows:  "With  respect  to  the  protection  of  the  fishermen  em- 
ployed on  the  Banks  of  Shrewsbury,  for  supplying  your  market,  I 
cannot  help  mentioning  to  you,  that  early  after  I  took  the  command 
on  this  station,  I  purchased  a  vessel  mounting  twelve  carriage  guns ; 
she  was  fitted  out  at  a  considerable  expense;  I  requested  that  the 
city  would  man  her ;  that  I  would  pay  the  men,  and  that  her  service 
should  never  be  directed  to  any  other  purpose  than  giving  such  pro- 
tection ;  my  ofifer  was  received  with  a  strong  degree  of  coolness,  and 
till  now  I  have  never  had  any  further  solicitation  on  the  subject/' 
The  "Chamber"  thought  this  answer  from  the  Admiral  was  from 
the  efiect,  that  their  suggestions  had  been  misunderstood  by  him, 
and  they  again  wrote:  "They  meant  no  oflFence;"  "that  they  knew 
of  no  application  about  the  vessel,  Ac,  but  if  he  would  furnish  this 
vessel,  they  doubt  not  they  will  be  able  in  a  short  time  not  only  to 
procure  as  many  men  as  your  Excellency  may  think  sufficient  for 
that  purpose,  but  also  to  raise  funds  for  paying  them ;  provided  pro- 
tection from  impress  can  be  granted  by  your  Excellency  to  the  men« 
and  that  they  shall  be  discharged  as  soon  as  the  fishing  season  is 
over." 

No  doubt  the  "Old  Market-House"  was  yet  standing,  although  it 
had  not  been  used  as  a  market-place  since  the  commencement  of  the 
"  War,"  when  it  was  taken  possession  of  by  the  military  as  a  bar- 
racks, store-house,  Ac.  The  Royal  Gazette,  July  1, 1780,  notices  it 
as  a  Begimental  StorCj  in  an  advertisement  for  a  "  deserter,  named 
Bichard  Hutchinson,  private  soldier  from  the  6^th  BegimerUal  Store^ 
at  Coenties  Market.  Whoever  will  give  information  of  the  said 
Hutchinson  to  Sergeant  McDonald,  at  the  said  store,  so  that  he  may 
be  apprehended,  shall  receive  one  guinea  reward.  M.  Wood,  Ensign 
64th  Regiment." 

The  same  "  paper,"  on  the  19th  of  August  following,  notices  "  a 
ship's  boat  taken  up  on  the  Bergen  shore:  whoever  can  prove  their 
property  and  pay  charges  may  have  her  again  by  applying  to  Eben- 
ezer  Wan,  in  the  *  Coenties  Market.' " 

Then  again  four  days  after,  notices  "  Rum,  dry  goods,  Ac,  for  sale 
at  John  Williams  and  Co's  Store,  No.  — ,  *  Coenties  Market.'" 


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C0ENTIE8   SLIP   MARKET.  123 

Soon  after  this  period  the  market-hoase  must  have  been  destroyed, 
and  the  place  where  it  stood  was  again  proclaimed  a  ptMic  market' 
place^  as  will  appear  in  the  following  "  Market  Regulations,  dated 
May  28,  1781,  by  Samuel  Birch,  Esqr.,  Brigadier-General  Com- 
mandant of  New  York,"  Ac. 

"*  Whereas  divers  persons,  influenced  by  a  desire  of  inordinate 
gain,  have  been  guilty  of  engrossing  and  forestalling  all  kinds  of 
victuals  and  provisions  in  this  town,  whereby  the  prices  thereof  are 
excessively  enhanced,  and  other  great  and  criminal  abuses  have  been 
committed  by  persons  as  well  acting  as  butchers  as  by  others  who 
frequent  the  markets  in  this  city,  to  the  manifest  iigury  of  the  inhab- 
itants, particularly  those  in  indigent  circumstances.  For  prevention 
whereof  in  future,  I  do  hereby  order : 

"  I.  That  all  fresh  meats,  victuals,  and  provisions  of  all  kinds, 
(fish  excepted,)  shall  be  openly  sold  in  one  or  other  of  the  public 
market-places,  and  no  where  else  in  this  cily,  {the  place  where  Coen- 
ties  Market  stood  to  be  considered  as  one,)  on  penalty  of  forfeiture; 
one  moiety  to  the  informer,  and  the  other  for  the  benefit  of  the  poor 
of  the  city. 

'*  II.  That  no  person  shall  presume  to  sell  any  fresh  meats,  victuals, 
or  provisions,  (fish  excepted,)  in  either  of  the  said  markets  before 
sunrise;  and  the  said  markets  shall  continue  open  until  twelve 
o'clock  in  the  forenoon,  and  no  longer,  (except  on  Saturday,)  on  pain 
of  forfeiture  as  aforesaid. 

^*  III.  That  no  negro,  or  other  slave  living  in  town,  shall  be  per^ 
mitted  to  buy  or  sell  victuals  or  provisions  of  any  kind  for  the  use 
of  his  or  her  master  or  employer  without  a  ticket  in  writing  for  that 
purpose  from  his  or  her  said  master  or  employer;  nor  shall  persons 
residing  in  the  country  suffer  their  negroes  or  other  slaves  to  sell 
the  produce  of  their  plantations  in  the  said  markets  without  such  a 
licence  or  authority  specifying  the  nature  and  quantity  of  the  arti- 
cles sent  under  their  care  and  directions  and  observing  the  foregoing 
r^ulations,  on  pain  of  forfeiture  to  be  applied  as  above. 

"  rV.  That  no  butcher  or  other  persons  shall  presume  to  hhw^  or 
cause  to  be  blown,  any  meat  brought  to  the  said  markets;  nor  shall 
they  add  to  or  sti^  the  said  meats  or  the  kidney  thereof  with  any 
/o^,  or  other  thing  whatsoever ;  but  the  same  shall  be  brought  to 
the  said  markets  in  the  natural  state  as  killed,  on  pain  of  forfeiture 
to  be  applied  as  above. 

"Y.  That  no  person  or  persons  bringing  fish  to  the  said  markets 
for  sale,  shall,  on  any  pretence  whatsoever,  store  the  same  or  lodge 
them  in  any  cellar,  warehouse,  or  other  places  whatsoever ;  but  shall 
expose  the  same  either  in  the  public  markets  or  in  the  boats  they  are 
brought  in,  on  forfeiture  to  be  ai^lied  as  above. 


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124  C0ENTIE8   SLIP   MARKET. 

"  YI.  That  no  person  acting  as  a  batcher  and  residing  on  this 
island,  do  presume  to  kill  any  kind  of  cattle,  but  at  a  public  slaughter- 
house, on  pain  of  forfeiture  the  same,  to  be  applied  as  above. 

''  YII.  That  Ephraim  Smith,  the  Clerk  of  the  Market,  shall  once 
in  every  month  at  least,  examine  the  weights  and  measures  made  use 
of  in  the  said  markets,  and  seize  to  his  own  benefit  all  such  as  he 
shall  find  deficient  by  the  standard. 

"VIII.  That  all  and  every  person  and  persons  exercising  the 
trade  and  occupation  of  a  butcher  in  this  city  shall  be  obliged,  within 
twenty  days  from  the  date  hereof,  to  take  out  licenses  for  that  pur- 
pose from  the  office  of  police,  and  enter  into  bond  in  the  penalty  of 
two  hundred  pounds,  with  one  sufficient  security,  unto  the  office  of 
police,  conditioned  for  the  due  and  faithful  observance  of  these  regu- 
lations on  their  parts ;  and  all  fresh  meats,  victuals,  or  provisions 
sold  or  exposed  for  sale  by  any  person  or  persons  without  entering 
into  bond,  and  obtaining  such  license  as  above,  shall  be  forfeited 
and  applied  as  above. 

"  IX.  That  the  Clerk  of  the  Markets  be  as  active  as  possible  in 
promoting  the  due  and  faithful  observance  of  these  regulations  and 
detecting  offenders;  and  prevent  any  contentions  between  the  in- 
habitants and  military.  Two  orderly  sergeants,  one  British  and  one 
German,  will  daily  attend  the  Clerk  of  the  Market  superintending 
thereof,  until  these  regulations  and  good  order  are  effectually  estab- 
lished therein ;  which  sergeants  are  to  be  paid  for  such  service  two 
shillings  currency  a  day  each,  out  of  the  money  arising  from  the  re- 
ceipts of  the  stalls  and  standings  in  the  said  market. 

"  X.  And  whereas  the  penalties  and  forfeitures  hereinbefore  in- 
flicted may  not  be  sufficient  to  restrain  the  lawless  and  avaricious 
pursuit  of  those  who  had  a  practice  of  committing  the  criminal 
abuses  alluded  to  in  the  said  markets :  In  order,  therefore,  effectually 
to  enforce  the  due  observance  of  these  regulations,  it  is  determined 
that  if  any  person  belonging  to  the  military  be  guilty  of  transgress- 
ing the  same,  such  person  shall  be  tried  and  punished  by  the  sentence 
of  a  court-martial,  as  for  a  breach  of  order ;  and  if  any  inhabitant 
or  other  person  shall  violate  the  said  regulations,  or  enter  into  any 
combination  or  conspiracy  to  defeat  or  invalidate  the  same,  or  to 
enhance  the  price  of  any  of  the  victuals,  provisions,  or  commodities 
usually  offered  for  sale  in  the  said  markets,  such  inhabitant  or  other 
person  shall  be  immediately  put  in  confinement  and  expelled  the 
line,  as  soon  as  an  opportunity  offers  for  that  purpose ;  and  it  is  or- 
dered, that  no  market  be  held  on  Sundays,  except  for  selling  fresh 
fish.  S.  BiBCH* 

"  May  28th,  1781.    By  order  of  the  Commandant. 

"John  St.  Clair,  Secretary.^ 


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FLY  MARKET.  125 

After  this  "  proclamation  "  it  is  noticed  sometimes  as  the  Coenties 
Market,  and  again  as  Coenties  Market-Place.  In  the  Royal  Ga- 
zette, nearly  a  month  after,  (June  20,)  it  is  said,  "  One,  two,  or  more 
rooms,  either  on  the  first  or  second  floor  of  an  exceeding  good  house, 
to  be  let,  situated  in  Dock  Street,  near  the  Coenties  Market."  The 
same  paper  two  years  after,  (May  14, 1783,)  refers  to  the  remoyal 
of  James  Griffiths  ''  to  the  house  No.  15  in  Little  Dock  Street,  be* 
tween  the  Old  Slip  and  Coenties  Market-Plaoe."  Five  days  after- 
wards, the  N.  Y.  Gazette  and  Weekly  Mercury  fixes  this  market- 
place as  the  starting-point  for  Newark.  "  Peter  Stuyvesant,  who 
for  many  years  drove  a  stage  waggon  from  Powles  Hook  to  Brown's 
Ferry,  proposes  to  b^in  again  next  Wednesday  for  the  like  purpose, 
and  will  sett  ofi*  from  Comonapa,  at  nine  o'clock  in  the  morning  and 
four  in  the  afternoon,  on  every  Monday,  Wednesday,  and  Saturday, 
and  drive  to  Brown's  Ferry,  where  Joseph  Crane  will  be  ready  with 
another  waggon  to  receive  all  passengers,  and  proceed  to  Newark. 
The  price  for  each  person  is  2s.  6d.  in  the  whole.  A  boat  will  at- 
tend at  Coenties  Market  to  receive  all  passengers  on  the  days  above 
mentioned,  at  seven  o'clock  in  the  morning." 

This  "  Market-place"  was  not  used  as  such  after  peace  was  pro- 
claimed, but  the  Slip  was  a  grand  d^pot^  principally  for  all  the  mar- 
ket-boats, which  brought  farming  produce  and  live  stock  that  came 
down  the  East  River,  and  this  continued  until  about  the  year  1835. 


FLY     MARKET." 


1699.  The  adoption  of  the  singular  name  of  Fly,  which  was 
given  to  this  once  famous  old  market-place,  no  doubt  proceeded  from 
the  name  of  a  long,  low,  salt-water  marsh  or  meadow,  which  at  an 
early  period  extended  from  about  Wall  Street,  along  the  East 
River  shore,  on  the  crooked  line  of  Pearl  Street — then  the  high- 
water  mark — up  to  the  risinpr  ground  about  Beekman  Street.  The 
Records  show,  as  early  as  1655,  that  this  marsh  was  called  by  the 
old  Dutchmen  Smee^a  Vlie,  SmidVs  Vley,  which  the  English  portion 
of  the  citizens  called  Smithes  Ply,  (SmitVa  Valley,  or  Smithes 
Meadotc,^^)  adopting  the  sound  of  the  name,  without  the  sense; 
and  the  name  of  Fly,  Smithes  Fly,  or  in  the  Fly,  was  known  for 
this  portion  of  the  city ;  (and  it  also  became  occasionally  used,  when 
denoting  the  present  Pearl  Street,)  until  near  1800. 


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126  FL7  MARKET. 

The  name  of  VUej  or  Vley,  and  Fly,  no  donbt  meant  to  desig- 
nate meadow-land,  aa  we  find  occasionally  SmiiKs  Meadow^  or 
MiddoWy  noticed.  From  an  inventory  of  goods  belonging  to  the 
estate  of  Elizabeth  Thyson,  deceased,  made  January  2,  1686,  she 
possessed,  "first,  one  small  house  and  lott  of  ground,  standing 
and  being  in  j^  Smith's  Middow,  (Meadow J  where  y«  said  Eliza- 
beth Thyson  is  deceased,  and  lett  out  to  John  Carrelson."*  In  the 
disposal  of  seyeral  tracts  of  land  near  Roundout  Greek,t  Robert 
G.  Livingston  offers  "  all  the  Fly  or  Meadow,  and  upland,  Ao. ;" 
and  again,  the  "  Flushing  Fly  or  Meadows  on  Long  Island"):  are 
noticed. 

To  further  prove  the  above  statements,  the  Records,  in  Decem- 
ber, 1691,  show  "all  the  lands  in  front  of  the  Vley,  from  the  Block- 
house (  WaR  Street)  to  Mr.  Bcekman's,  ordered  to  be  sold."  On  the 
6th  of  May  following,  it  was  "  Voted,  that  from  the  Block-house 
to  the  Green  Lane  (Maiden  Lane)  be  vallued  at  five-and-twenty  shil- 
lings p"^  foot,  and  from  the  Green  Lane  to  Mrs.  Van  Clyff 's,  (now  the 
present  John^bettoeen  Pearl  and  Cliff  Streets^  the  latter  of  which  took 
its  name  from  this  family,)  be  vallued  at  eighteen  shillings  p'  foot  \ 
and  from  Mrs.  Van  Clyff 's  to  Mr.  Beekman's,  (near  Beekman  Street  J 
be  vallued  at  fifteen  shillings  p^   foot." 

In  the  month  of  August  following,  the  purchasers  of  these  lots  in 
the  Smith's  Fflye  obtain  liberty  to  "Digg  the  Hill  by  Mr.  Beek- 
man's,  so  much  as  belongs  to  the  City  as  the  common  or  highway, 
(present  Pearl  Street  J  as  the  Surveyors  shall  direct." 

We  find  in  the  "press"  further  evidence.  "On  Saturday  last,  in 
the  afternoon,  one  Thomas  Smith  was  driving  a  cart,  which  was 
laden  with  iron,  along  the  street  in  Smith's  Fly:  the  horse  (which 
was  naturally  skittish)  took  fright  and  ran ;  and  he,  in  endeavoring 
to  hold  him,  was  so  violently  hurried  against  a  stoop  or  porch  before 
a  Door,  that  his  scull  was  fractured."§  "  John  Browne,  lately  mar- 
ried to  the  Widow  Breese,  continues  to  carry  on  the  leather-dress* 
er's  trade,  at  the  dwelling-house  of  the  late  John  Breese,  in  the 
Smith's  Fly,  near  Beekman's  Swamp,  or  Greple-Bush ;  at  the  south 
end  of  the  house  a  staff  is  erected,  with  a  Vane  on  the  top  of  it, 
&c."ll  The  "Weekly  Gazette"  of  1749  also  says,  "The  removal 
of  Charles  Arding  from  the  Meal  Market  to  the  Dock  near  Beek- 
man's  Slip,  in  the  Fly,  where  he  continues  to  sell  several  sorts  of 
European  Goods." 

Then,  to  be  sold  by  Evert  Pels,  "  a  very  good  lot  of  ground,  op- 
posite the  Hon.  William  Walton,  Esq.,  on  the  north  side  of  a  certain 

*  FUe&  t  Gazette,  1769.  }  Royal  Gazette,  Feb.  23,  17S2. 

^  Boston  Weekly  Newa  Letter,  Dec  20, 1737.       ||  Weekly  Poet  Boy,  Dec.  16,  1744. 


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FLY   MARKET.  127 

street  called  or  known  by  the  name  of  Queen  Street,  or  Smith's 
Ply:  adjoining  on  the  west  side  the  Ground  of  William  Elsworth, 
Jun'r;  east  side,  the  house  and  ground  of  the  Widow  Darcey — 
containing  in  breadth  and  front  to  said  Queen  Street,  or  Smiths 
Fly,  24  foot;  and  in  length  on  each  side  from  said  Queen  Street,  or 
Smith's  Fly,  to  the  said  Creple-Bush  or  Swamp,  244  foot,  be  the 
same  more  or  less."* 

*'  The  origin  of  this  name  (says  Valentine)  is  ascribed  to  the  cir- 
cumstance that  Cornelius  Glopper,  a  blacksmith,  established  himself 
on  the  present  comer  of  Maiden  Lane  and  Pearl  Street.  Here  he 
intercepted  the  country  people  from  Long  Island,  and  pursued  a 
profitable  business,  making  his  shop  a  point  of  sufficient  attraction 
to  give  distinctive  appellation  to  the  road  on  which  it  lay."  This 
stopping-place  no  doubt  originated  the  idea  of  establishing  a  mar- 
ket-place here. 

In  the  year  1692  a  Slip  (or  Key,  as  it  was  called  in  those  early 
days,)  was  made  at  the  east  end  of  this  '*  Green  Lane,"  {now  Maiden 
Lanej)  about  on  the  line  of  Pearl  Street,  at  the  mouth  of  a  creek, 
which  put  up  that  Lane  to  near  Gold  Street.  This  appears  with  the 
name  of  Maiden  Slip  in  the  Records  of  the  9th  of  August  of  that 
year,  which  say,  "As  also  two  other  wharfes  twelve  ffoot  wide,  one 
on  each  side  Maiden  Slip,  running  to  high-water  marke,  and  the 
Slipp  are  to  be  twenty-four  ffoot  wide." 

After  the  arrival  of  the  newly  appointed  Governor,  Richard 
Coote,  Earl  of  Bellamont,  in  1698,  this  Maiden  Slip  was  named  after 
and  in  compliment  to  the  Countess  or  wife  of  the  Lord  Bellamont, 
when  it  was  afterwards  known  as  the  Countess  Key. 

On  the  6th  of  September,  (1699,)  the  inhabitants  of  Queen  (Pearl) 
Street  laid  before  the  Court  a  petition,  *'  praying  that  a  market  be 
appointed  at  ^Cowitess  Key,'  and  that  they  will  build  a  convenient 
market-house  at  their  own  charge,  for  the  publick  benefit."  The 
petition  was  granted,  and  it  was  ordered,  '*  that  the  inhabitants  of  the 
said  street,  at  their  own  cost  and  charge,  have  liberty  to  erect  any 
publick  building  at '  Countess  Key'  aforesaid,  for  the  convenience 
and  ornament  of  the  city."  Although  their  petition  was  granted  at 
this  time,  yet  it  appears  by  the  following,  that  it  was  not  built  until 
nearly  seven  years  after.  In  the  proceedings  held  20th  June,  1706, 
we  read,  ''Pursuant  to  an  order  of  the  Court,  bearing  date  the  6th 
day  of  September,  1699,  authorizing  the  inhabitants  of  Queen  Street 
to  build  a  convenient  markett-house  at  their  own  charge,  for  the 
public  benefitt,  at  'Countess  Key;'  it  is  hereby  ordered,  that  such 

•  Guette,  April  9. 1769.    The  old  « Walton  Hooae"  ii  jet  etuding,  (in  FruUiB 
,)  in  Pearl  Stietl,  above  Peck  Slip. 


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128  FLY   MARKET. 

markett-house  as  the  said  inhabitants  shall  erect  and  bnild,  at  their 
own  charge,  betwixt  the  houses  of  Captain  John  Depeyster  and  Bar- 
nardus  Smith,  att  the  north  end  of  the  Slip  in  *  Countess  Key'  afore- 
said, be  appointed  and  continue  a  publick  markett  and  markett-house 
of  this  city  forever." 

One  week  previous,  {lith  June)  the  "Council"  had  given  "the 
inhabitants  of  Queen  Street  liberty,  att  their  own  charge,  to  build  a 
Bridge  over  the  Slip  att  *  Countess  Key^  att  the  south  end  thereof, 
leaving  a  Draw-Bridge  for  boats  to  pass"  (up  the  "creek,"  noticed 
before.) 

"The  inhabitants  of  the  City  of  New  York,"  says  Smith,  "con- 
sisted, at  this  time,  of  Dutch  Calvinists,  upon  the  plan  of  the  Church 
of  Holland ;  French  refugees,  on  the  Geneva  model ;  a  few  English 
Episcopalians,  and  a  still  smaller  number  of  English  and  Irish  Pres- 
byterians, who  have  neither  a  minister  nor  a  church,  used  to  assem- 
ble themselves  every  Sunday  at  a  private  house,  for  the  worship  of 
God.  Such  were  the  circumstances,  when  Francis  M'Kemie  and 
John  Hampton,  two  Presbyterian  ministers,  arrived  here  in  January, 
1707.  As  soon  as  Lord  (or  Governor)  Cornbury,  who  hated  the 
whole  persuasion,  heard  that  the  Dutch  had  consented  to  M^Kemie's 
preaching  in  their  church,  he  arbitrarily  forbid  it."  M'Kemie,  how- 
ever, did  preach  with  open  doors  at  a  private  house,  as  also  did  Mr. 
Hampton  at  Newtown.  They  were  arrested  and  imprisoned  for  six 
weeks. 

Part  of  the  duties  of  the  Church  Wardens  appear  to  have  been 
the  care  or  charge  of  the  poor  of  the  city,  as  they  were,  on  29th  of 
September  this  year,  "Ordered,  the  Church  Wardens  of  this  city 
put  a  badge  upon  the  clothes  of  such  poor  as  are  clothed  by  this 
city  with  this  mark,  N.  Y.,  in  blew  or  red  cloth,  att  their  discretion." 

Great  preparation  for  the  war  with  the  French  had  been  made, 
as  noticed  before,  and  still  greater  preparations  were  making  in  the 
early  part  of  the  year  1709  for  a  grand  expedition  in  the  reduction 
of  Canada.  "  Commissioners  were  appointed  to  purchase  provisions 
and  other  necessaries,  and  empowered  to  break  open  houses  for  that 
purpose;  and  to  impress  men,  vessels,  horses,  and  waggons  for  trans- 
porting the  stores."  Twenty  ship  and  house  carpenters  were  im- 
pressed into  the  service  for  building  battoes,  of  which  we  find  "  one 
hundred  were  built,  and  as  many  canoes ;"  and  after  expending  above 
twenty  thousand  pounds,  it  proved  a  failure.* 

In  1711  another  grand  expedition  for  the  same  purpose  was  made; 
the  market-houses  were  all  taken  except  07i€,t  to  build  the  battoes 
in.  The  Market-House  at  Countess  Key  was  set  apart  for  the  build- 
*  Smith.  t  See  "  Old  Slip  Market » 


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FLT   MARKET.  129 

ing» "  and  for  no  other  use  or  service  whatever,  until  the  same  be 
compleat  and  finished."  This  expedition  in  the  end,  after  losing  a 
great  many  lives  by  shipwreck  and  other  disasters,  proved  most  un- 
fortunate for  fhe  country  for  several  years. 

The  market-houses  were  closed  but  a  few  months  to  those  persons 
who  supplied  them,  among  which  were  several  countrymen,  who 
were  in  the  habit  of  defrauding  the  city  out  of  the  fees,  by  making 
a  quick  sale,  and  leaving  the  markets  before  the  clerk  could  collect 
them.  This  called  for  an  ordinance  on  the  16th  of  October,  same 
year,  when  *'  it  was  ordained  that  from  henceforth  the  country  peo- 
ple who  frequent  the  markets  of  this  corporation,  have  liberty  to 
expose  their  meat  for  sale  in  the  publick  market  by  the  joynt  or 
otherwise,  as  they  shall  see  convenient,/r«^  paying  the  fees  of  the 
clerk  of  the  market  for  the  same ;  and  that  if  any  flesh  be  exposed 
to  sale  by  the  joynt  by  any  country  people  before  the  fees  of  the 
clerk  of  the  market  are  paid,  the  same  shall  be  forfeited  to  the  use 
of  the  poor  of  this  city." 

This  market,  in  the  Laws  of  1720,  is  thus  noticed:  "The  Marke^ 
House  at  Countess  Key ;"  after  this  period,  in  all  the  printed  laws, 
it  reads,  "At  the  Market-House  at  or  near  the  Countess  Key,  com- 
monly called  Countesse's  Slip ;"  and  the  first  notice  found  of  it  being 
called  ''Fly  MarkeV^  is  from  Lyne's  Map,  1729,  then  continued  by 
F.  Maerschalcks,  1755;  T.  Maerschalcken,  1763,  and  so  further  con- 
tinued by  all  other  surveyors  on  their  maps  of  the  city,  as  long  as  it 
stood. 

In  1735  many  country  butchers  and  others  presented  themselves 
in  the  garb  of  countrymen,  and  claiming  their  rights,  who  were  al- 
lowed, in  the  different  markets,  the  best  standings,  without  paying 
the  regular  fees;  this  gave  cause  of  great  complaint  to  the  regular 
butchers,  who  in  the  month  of  August,  (1735,)  presented  a  petition, 
'Spraying  relief  from  the  many  impositions  practised,  and  wishing  to 
take  charge  of  the  public  markets,  and  paying  a  certain  amount  of 
fees  for  the  same,"  Ac.  "A  committee  was  appointed  to  examine 
into  the  allegations  thereof,  and  make  their  report."  Before  their 
report  was  ready,  "  a  law  for  the  better  regulating  and  ordering  the 
publick  markets"  was  passed,  and  appeared  on  the  4th  of  November 
following,  which  no  doubt  gave  some  relief,  as  will  appear  from  a 
portion  of  it:  "And  be  it  further  ordained,  that  (in  regard  the  mar- 
ketts  are  principally  intended  for  the  benefitt  of  housekeepers,  who 
buy  for  their  own  use,)  the  hucksters  and  retailers  within  this  city, 
who  buy  to  sell  again,  shall  not  enter  into  any  of  the  aforesaid  mar- 
kets to  make  their  provisions,  and  buy  to  sell  again  any  sort  of  mar- 
ket provisions  of  any  of  the  market  people  there,  to  sell  again,  or 
Vol.  I.— 9 


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180  FLY   MARKET. 

carry  tae  same  to  their  several  houses  and  shops,  until  the  afternoon 
of  every  day,  to  the  end,  that  the  housekeepers  may  provide  Hiem- 
selves  in  the  forenoon  of  every  day  at  the  first  hand/'  And  "  in  or- 
der for  making  the  several  marketts  of  this  city  more  commodious 
and  convenient  for  the  future,  as  well  for  the  butchers  being  free- 
men of  this  city,  as  of  all  other  persons  who  resort  thereto  for  the 
supply  thereof,  a  standing  committee  shall  be  appointed  by  the  Com- 
mon Council,  who  shall  be  empowered  and  authorized  to  enlarge, 
alter,  repair,  and  support  from  time  to  time  all  the  marke^hou8e8  at 
the  expense  of  the  city."  *'  That  no  more  than  two  stalls  or  stand- 
ings in  any  one  of  the  said  marketts  shall  be  let  or  leased  to  any  one 
butcher."  "  And  whereas,  by  virtue  of  divers  Laws  of  this  Cor- 
poration for  many  years  past,  the  clerk  of  the  markett  had  took  and 
received  certain  fees  for  all  neat  cattle,  hogs,  shoats,  sheep,  calves, 
and  lambs  that  were  killed  for  the  markett :  Be  it  therefore  further 
ordained,  by  the  authority  aforesaid,  that  it  shall  not  be  lawful  for 
the  clerks  of  the  marketts  of  this  city  to  intermeddle  with  the  re- 
ceipts of  dutys,  fees,  or  profits,  or  take  any  money  of  any  butchers  or 
other  persons  resorting  to,  or  standing  in  any  of  the  common  mar- 
ketts aforesaid,  upon  any  pretence  whatsoever,  other  than  for  examin- 
ing and  sealing  of  weights  and  measures  by  virtue  of  his  office." 

On  the  16th  of  same  month  a  report  was  made  on  the  petition  of 
the  butchers  previously  presented,  in  the  month  of  August,  as  fol- 
lows :  "  That  it  was  the  opinion  of  the  committee  that  it  would  be 
for  the  benefit  of  the  Corporation  to  take  the  several  market-houses 
under  their  own  care,  and  should  at  their  own  charge  support  and 
maintain  the  same  from  time  to  time  for  the  future  with  all  neces- 
sary repairs,  and  that  they  cause  the  several  stalls  in  the  several 
markets  to  be  numbered  and  marked,  and  let  out  by  lease  to  the  pe- 
titioners or  such  other  person  or  persons  as  shall  agree  to  take  the 
same  at  a  reasonable  and  annual  reserved  rent  for  the  use  of  the 
Corporation." 

On  the  10th  of  December  following,  the  committee  who  were  em- 
powered to  "  cause  the  stalls  in  the  severall  markets  to  be  number- 
ed and  marked,  and  let"  for  one  year,  reported  to  have  "mett  and 
agreed  with  the  following  butchers  for  stalls  in  the  Fly  Market:" 

"To  Richard  Green,  .        .        -    i  stall,  No.  1,  £6  0  0 


To  Widow  Laurier,     - 

1 

M 

2. 

1  0  0 

To  Isaac  Varian,    - 

m              ■         -            1 

(« 

8, 

200 

To  George  Young, 

-                       •                        1 

U 

4, 

40  0 

To  Charles  Dawson, 

•            1 

U 

5, 

6  00 

To  John  Stockford,     - 

1 

U 

6, 

3  0  0 

To  Edward  Kelly,  - 

-            1 

M 

1, 

5  0  0." 

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PLY   MARKET.  131 

The  several  lessees  of  these  stands  "  were  ordered  to  give  bonds 
to  the  Chamberlain,  to  pay  the  said  rents  quarterly  for  the  use  of 
this  Corporation." 

Although  the  Common  Council  had  taken  "  the  several  market- 
houses  nnder  their  own  care,  and  should  at  their  own  charge  sup- 
port and  maintain"  them,  yet  I  find  the  very  next  year  the  people, 
anxious  to  preserve  and  add  to  their  market  accommodations,  peti- 
tioned to  be  allowed  to  enlarge  this  market;  and  the  Authorities 
on  the  2l8t,  1736,  granted  their  prayer,  giving  to  "  the  inhabitants 
of  the  East  Ward  liberty,  at  their  own  charge,  to  enlarge  the  Mar- 
ket^House  at  Countess  Key  Slip,  in  such  manner  as  the  Aldermen 
and  Assistants  of  the  said  Ward  shall  direct,  and  that  the  butchers' 
stalls,  or  some  of  them,  be  removed  into  the  new  enlargement  at  the 
south  end  thereof*" 

On  the  22d  of  May,  1737,  the  same  six  butchers  again  lease 
stands  for  another  year,  but  the  butchereaa,  the  Widow  Laurier's, 
name  is  missing. 

This  system  of  leasing  these  stands  continued  until  the  year 
1740,  when  several  of  the  butchers  refused  to  agree  with  the 
^*  Committee,"  in  consequence  of  their  not  having  been  protected 
in  their  rights.  This  Committee,  finding  they  could  not  make  the 
former  arrangements  with  several  of  the  butchers,  made  the  follow- 
ing report  to  the  Board  on  the  4th  of  May,  (same  year:)  "  That  we 
have,  after  many  and  frequent  meetings,  great  trouble  and  difficulty, 
agreed  with  the  several  butchers  who  have  subscribed  their  names 
to  the  paper  hereunto  annexed,  for  the  stalls  and  standings  in  the 
several  market-houses."  "We  also  further  report,  that  George 
Young  and  Thomas  Cox,  two  butchers  of  this  city,  did  not  appear 
before  the  Committee,  though  sundry  times  summoned  for  that  pur- 
pose. That  Israel  Horsefield  and  James  Ruffhead  (though  they  fre- 
quently appeared  and  attended  the  Committee)  yet  refused  to  agree, 
notwithstanding  a  considerable  abatement  was  offered  the  former. 
The  Committee  do  beg  leave  also  humbly  to  inform  this  Court,  that 
one  Evardus  Brower,  and  many  others,  living  on  Nassau  (Long) 
Island,  who  make  it  their  chief  business  to  buy,  kill,  and  sell  cattle, 
do  daily  come  and  take  up  the  stalls  or  standings  in  the  said  mar- 
ket-houses, without  paying  anything  for  the  same.  Lastly,  the 
Committee  are  htmibly  of  opinion  that  some  other  method  can  and 
ought  to  be  taken  less  burthensome,  and  more  profitable  to  the 
Corporation,  in  letting  the  stalls  and  standings  in  the  market- 
houses,  than  have  been  heretofore.  All  of  which  is  humbly,  Ac." 
(Sgned,)  Will.  Booms,  8.  Johnson,         Peteb  Jay, 

Peteb  Yak  Banst,     H.  Defetsteb,     Sam'l  Lawbskgb. 


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132  FL7   MARKET. 

"  Which  report  is  approved  of  by  this  Board,  and  ordered  that  the 
Common  Clerk  commence  an  action  in  the  Supream  Conrt  against 
Israel  and  Timothy  Horsefield  for  the  rent  due  from  them  for  their 
stalls  and  standings  in  the  (Old  Slip)  Market-House." 

At  this  period  an  occurrence  took  place  near  this  market,  which 
introduced  its  proper  name,  and  no  doubt  it  had  then  become  the 
common  one.  It  read  as  follows:  "  Sunday  last,  about  five  o'clock 
in  the  afternoon,  a  fire  broke  out  in  the  stable  of  Mr.  John  Roserelt, 
over  against  the  Fly  Market,  in  this  city.  It  burned  the  said  stable, 
his  bolting-house,  chocolate  engine-house,  and  part  of  his  linseed  oil 
mill-house,  Ac."* 

The  slip  near  this  market,  which  had  been  so  long  known  as  the 
"  Countess  Key  Slip,"  appears  to  have  been  changed  to  "  Smith's 
Fly  Slip"  about  the  year  1740,  when  no  doubt  the  Countess  of  Bel- 
lamont  had  been  publicly  forgotten.  A  petition  from  Peter  Schuy- 
ler and  others,  in  1744,  states,  *'  that  they  are  the  proprietors  and 
owners  of  the  wharfs  and  soil  between  the  ^ Smith! a  Fly  8lip^  and 
Burling  Slip,  in  the  East  Ward." 

The  business  around  the  Fly  Market  began  now  to  show  an  im- 
proved state;  in  fact,  the  city  on  the  "east  end"  or  side  far  out- 
stripped the  "west  end,"  and  just  around  the  public  markets  ap- 
peared to  be  the  common  centre  for  the  transactions  of  trade  and 
sale  of  almost  every  character.  Slaves  were  then  kept,  principally 
by  all  who  could  afford  such  help,  and  they  were  bought  and  sold 
both  at  this  and  the  meal  markets.  The  "old  papers"  about  this 
(1744)  and  various  periods  would  often  show  a  notice  of  this  kind: 
"  To  be  sold  at  public  vendue,  on  Saturday  morning  next,  at  10 
o'clock,  at  the  Fly  Market,  a  negro  man,  who  can  cook  and  do  all 
sorts  of  household  work."  Here,  then,  at  this  age,  our  public  mar- 
kets answered  a  double  purpose :  for  in  them  were  not  only  sold  the 
dead  flesh,  which  tended  to  keep  the  soul  and  body  together,  but  the 
living  fl^h,  with  the  soul  and  body  too. 

The  improvements  also  appeared  to  keep  pace  with  the  business. 
In  1748  a  very  important  one  was  finished  by  the  Corporation,  who 
"  have,  at  a  very  great  expense,  made  a  drain  or  common  sewer 
from  the  East  River,  under  the  Ply  Market,  up  Maiden  Lane  to  the 
high  grounds."  It  was  not,  however,  satisfactory  to  the  neighbor- 
hood, as  it  was  not  sufficient  for  the  purposes  intended ;  so  they 
propose  to  consult,  and,  if  necessary,  to  assist,  the  Corporation  in 
enlarging  and  extending  it  farther  out  into  the  East  River.  A 
committee  was  appointed  from  the  Corporation,  on  the  11th  of 
July,  1749,  "  to  view  and  examine  the  Fly  Market,  and  advise  and 
*  BcMton  Weekly  Mews  Letter,  December  20,  1737. 


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FLT   MARKET.  133 

eoBSoIt  wliat  the  expense  and  laying  ont  a  good  and  sufficient 
drain.''  This  Committee  reported,  on  the  17th  inst.,  "that  the 
present  drain  be  ran  ont  and  extended  so  far  into  the  'Fly  Slip^  as 
to  range  with  the  rear  of  Captain  Robert  Livingston's  store-house, 
and  to  be  filled  in  on  both  sides  level  with  the  peers/'  "  That  the 
cost  or  expense  thereof  (exclusive  of  the  subscriptions  of  that  neigh- 
borhood) the  Committee  cannot  ascertain;"  and  "advise  the  work 
done  with  the  utmost  expedition."  Another  committee,  of  «ix,  was 
appointed  to  have  the  work  done,  but  they  found  the  expense  would 
be  80  great,  "as  neither  the  neighborhood  or  the  Corporation 
would  consent  to  allow  for  that  purpose."  "  That  in  order  to  pre- 
vent the  same  from  being  a  nuisance,  there  be  dug  out  of  the  said 
slip  so  much  of  the  mud,  dirt,  and  ground  as  to  leave  twelve  inches 
water  at  low  water,  which  will  keep  the  same  sweet,  and  prevent 
its  being  a  nuisance ;  and  which  is  also  conceived  by  the  neighbor- 
hood to  be  the  most  easy  and  effectual  method;  and  forasmuch  as 
the  doing  thereof  will  be  an  annual  charge,  and  as  all  other  com- 
mon sewers  and  wharfs  of  this  city  are  maintained  and  repaired 
and  cleansed  at  the  publick  charge  of  this  city,  they,  the  neighbor- 
hood, have  proposed  to  the  Committee  to  pay  into  the  hands  of  the 
Chamberlain  or  Treasurer  of  this  city  the  sum  of  sixty  pounds, 
current  money  of  this  colony,  to  be  expended  for  that  purpose,  as 
fiar  as  the  same  will  extend:  provided  the  Corporation  will,  at 
their  own  expense,  advance  such  farther  sum  as  will  be  necessary 
to  keep  the  same  clean ;  and  shall  and  will,  at  their  own  expense, 
keep  the  same  in  repair,  and  from  becoming  a  nuisance  for  the 
future." 

The  next  year  (1750)  a  proposition  was  made  to  build  a  large 
cistern  near  the  Widow  Rutger's  brew-house,  near  Gold  Street,  "to 
eerve  in  case  of  fire."  It  was  expected  this  cistern  would  fill  with 
clean  water  at  every  high  tide,  by  the  proposer ;  who  failed  to  con- 
vince the  public  of  the  great  benefit,  and  the  project  fell  through. 

In  the  spring  of  the  next  year,  (1751,)  among  the  parliamentary 
proceedings  of  the  mother-country^  a  most  remarkable  act  was  pass- 
ed for  regulating  the  commencement  of  the  year,  and  correcting  the 
calendar  according  to  the  Gregorian  computation.  The  proceed- 
ings of  the  General  Assembly  on  the  11th  of  April,  in  the  year 
1696,  had  "Ordered,  that  the  said  year  begins  the  first  day  of  Hay, 
anno  1696,  and  terminates  the  first  day  of  May,  1697."  But  by  this 
new  law,  it  was  decreed  that  the  new  year  should  begin  on  the  first 
of  January,  and  that  eleven  intermediate  nominal  days,  between  the 
second  and  fourteenth  days  of  September,  1752,  should  for  that  time 
be  omitted,  so  that  the  third  should  be  denominated  the  fourteenth. 


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134  FLY   MARKET. 

This  change  was  thus  annonnced :  "  Thursday  next  the  new  style 
begins  to  take  place  in  all  the  English  dominions,  when  this  d^y, 
which  would  have  been  the  3d,  must  be  reckoned  the  14th  of  Sep- 
tember ;  and  from  thenceforward,  our  reckonings  of  time  will  be 
agreeable  to  that  of  most  foreign  nations/'*  "Our  calendar  is  of 
Roman  origin,  and  was  originally  divided  by  Romulus  into  ten 
months,  comprising  304  days.  Numa  Pompillus  added  two  months 
to  the  year;  and  Julius  Cesar  subsequently  arranged  the  solar 
year  at  365  days,  6  hours.  As  the  solar  year  really  consists  of  365 
days,  5  hours,  and  49  minutes,  the  error  amounted  in  1582  to  ten 
days,  when  Pope  Gregory  XIII.  ordained  that  1582  should  contain 
365  days  only,  and  made  other  alterations,  which  brought  the  ver- 
nal equinox  to  the  21st  of  March,  where  it  should  be."t  This 
change  has  since  been  known  as  the  New  Style;  the  Old  Style  is 
seldom  noticed,  except  occasionally  letters  received  from  Russia 
will  be  marked  with  both,  the  new  and  the  old  dates,  or  in  the  con- 
nection  with  some  event  prior  to  this  period. 

In  March,  1754,  the  Corporation  advertise,  "  These  are  to  give 
notice  to  all  persons,  that  on  Thursday,  the  21st  day  of  March»  in- 
stant, at  two  o'clock  in  the  afternoon,  at  the  Common  Council  Room, 
in  the  City  Hall  of  this  City,  will  be  let  to  farm,  by  publick  outcry, 
to  the  highest  bidder,  the  stalls  and  standings  of  the  several  markets 
of  this  City."  On  tiie  14th  of  June  following,  the  same  body  ap- 
pointed a  committee  to  receive  "  proposals  from  the  inhabitants  near 
the  Fly  Market  towards  enlarging  the  said  market  in  length,  to  be 
att  their  own  expense.'':t  Their  proposals  were  accepted,  and  soon 
after  the  market  appears  enlarged,  which  was  very  acceptable,  as  the 
business  had  been  increasing  and  much  increased  for  the  ten  years 
previous;  at  which  period  (1744)  provisions  were  represented  to 
have  been  very  cheap,  " by  those  who  knew"  who  says,  " The  rich 
never  have  wanted  luxuries,  and  the  poor  have  been  able  to  subsist 
upon  the  earnings  of  a  few  hours' labour ;  3  pence  in  fish,  bread,  and 
drink  afforded  a  comfortable  meal;  6  pence  would  procure  meat, 
bread,  and  drink.  Such  have  been  the  opportunities  of  earning 
money  by  different  kinds  of  labour,  that  none  willing  to  work  were 
in  want ;  hence  there  were  few  beggars,  except  the  lazy,  drunken 
wretches  not  fit  subjects  for  the  Alm8-house."§ 

These  prosperous  and  plentiful  times  no  doubt  continued  for  sev- 
eral years ;  and  to  further  assist  the  cheapness  of  at  least  one  kind 
of  provisions,  the  "  papers"  in  the  month  of  April,  1754,  state,  **  We 
had  such  great  quantities  of  {tvHd)  pidgeons  in  our  markets  last 

*  N.  Y.  Gazetteer.  Aagost  81, 1752.  t  Sunday  Times,  January,  1861. 

t  N.  Y.  Mercoiy,  Maroh  11, 1764.  §  **  Olden  Time  in  New  York,'*  le. 


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FLY   MARKET.  135 

week,  that  no  less  than  six  were  sold  for  one  eld  penny  J^  In  the 
face  of  all  this  plentifolness,  we  find  seyeral  of  the  products  which 
ought  to  have  overrun  the  generous  soil  of  our  country  imported  from 
another  at  this  period.  The  N.  Y.  Mercury,  December  23, 1754, 
gives  an  instance,  as  follows:  *'  There  is  to  be  sold  on  board  of  the 
mow  Lord  Ru89dy  James  Hathorn,  master,  Irish  potatoes,  butter  in 
erocks  and  firkins,  and  Irish  beef."  Then,  nearly  two  years  after, 
the  high  prices  of  meats  are  particularly  noticed  in  an  editorial  of 
the  N.  Y.  Weekly  Post  Boy,  April  19, 1756,  as  follows:  "The  end 
of  last  week,  on  the  departure  of  most  of  the  o£Bcers  of  if  is  Majesty's 
forces,  fresh  beef  was  sold  in  our  markets  at  6d.  per  pound  by  the 
whole  quarter.  This  seemed  to  be  a  gloomy  prospect  for  many  of 
our  poor,  who  buy  from  hand  to  mouth ;  but  that  Being  who  careth 
/or  them  happily  sent,  in  a  few  days,  large  supplies  of  fish ;  and  on 
Thursday  last,  Mr.  Bernard  Johnson,  of  Oravesend,  on  Long  Island, 
caught  Jive  thousand  seven  hundred  shad  at  one  hawl  of  a  sein,  be- 
side large  numbers  of  several  other  bawls;  and  the  next  day  sold 
the  greater  part  of  them  in  our  markets." 

These  high  prices  and  scarcity  continued  for  many  years  after, 
and  caused  many  to  intercept  the  country  people  on  the  ferry-boats, 
and  purchase  their  marketing,  thereby  taking  the  advantage  of  the 
many  who  expected  to  purchase  in  the  markets  when  they  arrived. 
A  ocmununication  from  an  (^ficer  to  the  editor  of  the  N.  Y.  Mercury, 
(February  27, 1758,)  addressed  to  Mr.  Gaine,  says,  "As  it  is  a  daily 
practice  among  servants  and  others  to  purchase  many  kinds  of  pro- 
visions out  of  the  ferry-boats  and  other  boats,  in  contempt  of  the 
law,  therefore  be  pleased  to  publish  the  following  Abstract  from  the 
Laws  of  the  Corporation,  in  order  that  no  ignorance  may  be  plead, 
as  the  same  will  be  put  in  execution  without  distinction. 

"  No  person  or  persons  shall  buy,  sell,  or  cause  to  be  bought  or 
sold,  any  victuals  or  other  provisions  or  things  whatsoever,  within 
the  City  of  New  York,  or  the  liberties  thereof,  coming  to  any  of  the 
common  markets  of  the  said  city,  or  making  any  contract,  promise, 
or  bargain,  for  the  selling,  having,  or  buying  of  the  same,  or  any 
part  thereof  so  coming  to  any  of  the  common  markets  aforesaid,  be- 
fore the  same  shall  be  brought  into  one  of  the  said  markets,  ready 
to  be  sold,  (fish  of  all  kinds  only  excepted,)  upon  pain,  that  as  well 
every  person  selling  or  contracting,  as  every  person  so  buying  or 
contracting,  either  by  themselves  or  their  white  servant  or  servants, 
shall  respectively  forfeit,  for  any  ofience,  the  sum  of  six  shillings. 

''And  if  negro  or  other  slave  shall  offend,  he  shall  receive  15 
lashes  on  the  bare  back  at  the  public  whipping-post  or  house  of  cor* 
rection,  unless  the  master  will  pay  six  shillings  to  execute  the  same." 


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136  TLY   MARKET. 

The  next  year  followed  with  a  great  scarcity  of  flre-wood,  when 
hundreds  of  families  suflfered  from  the  long  season  of  cold  weather. 
A  somewhat  singular  appeal  for  assistance  is  found  in  the  N.  Y. 
Mercury,  December  31, 1759,  headed,  "  Help!  HelpI  Help!  Wood 
at  three  pouTids  ten  ahiUinga  a  cord^  a  price  never  before  heard !  The 
countryman  says,  *We  have  wood  enough.'  The  boatman  says,  *2 
covld  fetch  two  loads  while  I  am  bringing  and  unloading  one!^  The 
merchants  employ  the  carmen  in  carrying  their  sugars,  £c.  The 
widow  hears  a  noise  in  her  yard,  rises  from  her  bed  at  midnight, 
from  her  window  sees  a  thief,  and  asks  him  what  he  is  doing;  he 
answers,  I  must  have  wood!  In  the  morning  views  her  small  pile, 
and  laments  the  loss  of  half  a  cord.  The  rich  engross,  when  per- 
haps two  hundred  families  have  not  a  stick  to  burn,  and  (it  is  said) 
thus  it  is!  in  one  house  where  two  persons  now  lie  dead  of  the 
small-pox." 

"  Should  not  the  Fathers  of  the  City  do  something  in  this  extremity? 
Cannot  our  magistrates  appoint  an  officer  or  officers  to  inspect  every 
boat,  to  agree  on  the  price  of  the  whole,  distribute  their  wood  in 
small  quantities  at  the  price  agreed  on,  command  the  carmen  from 
every  other  service  to  attend  the  boat  till  unloaded?  If  this  or 
something  to  the  same  purpose  be  not  done,  what  may  be  the  condi- 
tion of  this  city  before  the  beginning  of  February  next?" 

*'At  this  period,"  says  Rev.  Mr.  Burnaby,  "  the  City  of  New  York 
contains  between  2  and  3,000  houses,  and  16  or  17,000  inhabitants, 
is  tolerably  well  built,  and  has  several  good  houses.  The  streets 
are  paved,  and  very  clean,  but  in  general  they  are  narrow ;  there 
are  two  or  three,  indeed,  which  are  spacious  and  airy,  particularly 
the  Broadway.  The  houses  in  this  street  have  most  of  them  a  row 
of  trees  before  them,  which  forms  an  agreeable  shade,  and  produce 
a  pretty  effect.  The  whole  length  of  the  town  is  something  more 
than  a  mile,  the  breadth  of  it  about  half  a  one." 

Among  the  public  buildings,  "  the  College,  when/m^Aec?,  will  be 
exceedingly  handsome ;  it  is  built  on  three  sides  of  a  quadrangle, 
fronting  Hudson's  or  North  River,  and  will  be  the  most  beautifully 
situated  of  any  College,  I  believe,  in  the  world." 

Of  the  inhabitants,  "  more  than  half  of  them  are  Dutch,  and  almost 
all  traders ;  they  are,  therefore,  habitually  frugal,  industrious,  and 
parsimonious."  Their  amusements  are  "  balls  and  sleighing  expedi- 
tions in  the  winter ;  and,  in  the  summer,  going  in  parties  upon  the 
waters,  and  fishing,  or  making  excursions  in  the  country, 

"There  are  several  houses  pleasantly  situated  upon  the  East  River, 
near  New  York,  where  it  is  common  to  have  turtle  feasts ;  these 
happen  once  or  twice  a  week.    Thirty  or  forty  gentlemen  and  ladies 


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FLY   MARKET.  187 

meet  to  dine  together,  drink  tea  in  the  afternoon,  fish,  and  amnse 
titemselves  till  evening,  and  then  return  home  in  Italian  chaises — a 
gentleman  and  lady  in  each  chaise.  In  the  way  there  is  a  bridge, 
about  three  miles  distant  from  New  York,  which  you  always  pass 
orer  as  you  return,  called  the  Kissing  Bridge,  (over  De  Voor^a  MtU 
Stream,  juat  bdow  '  (Hd  Colore!  about  bith  Street,  between  2d  and  3d 
Avenues  J  where  it  is  a  part  of  the  etiquette  to  salute  the  lady  who 
has  put  herself  under  your  protection/' 

^  The  province  in  its  cultivated  state  affords  grain  of  all  sorts, 
cattle,  hogs,  and  great  variety  of  English  fruits,  particularly  the 
Newtown  pippin." 

The  manner  of  bringing  the  market  productions  to  the  Fly  and 
other  markets  at  this  period  was  usually  by  water.  Those  living 
in  the  interior  on  Long  Island  brought  them  in  wagons  and  ox-carts 
to  the  ferry,  then  unloaded  on  the  ferry-boats,  which  came  direct  to 
the  markets.  The  boats  were  propelled  either  by  a  fair  wind  or 
rowed  across,  usually  three  or  four  trips  a  day,  and  seldom  a  loaded 
team  crossed  with  them.  The  farmers  living  in  New  Jersey  and 
the  neighboring  counties,  both  on  the  North  and  East  Rivers, 
brought  theirs  also  down  ui  the  same  manner  to  the  nearest  water- 
side— ^unloaded  into  their  skiffs;  then,  with  the  tide  of  ebb,  easily 
rowed  to  the  city  direct  to  the  various  markets  on  the  shores,  where 
they  usually  disposed  of  their  products  in  time  to  return  with  the 
flood  tide. 

Such  were  some  6f  the  inducements  offered  in  the  following  notice 
of  the  sale  of  "  Little  Bern  Island,  at  public  auction,  belonging  to 
the  estate  of  Mr.  St.  George  Talbot,  deceased,  situate  opposite  New 
Harlaem  Church,  in  the  out-ward  of  this  city,  containing  upwards 
of  one  hundred  acres  of  land  and  meadows.  It  abounds  with  wild 
fowl,  as  ducks,  geese,  pidgeons,  quails,  Ac,  and  has  the  advantage 
of  a  fine  seine-fishery,  and  black-fish,  oysters,  lobsters,  Ac.  Being  in 
the  vicinity  of  New  York,  the  produce  may  be  brought  to  the  *  Ply 
Market'  with  the  tide  of  ebb,  and  the /ood  will  waft  the  craft  home."* 

We  find,  however,  in  their  haste  to  and  fro,  they  would  seek  a 
low  from  some  of  the  larger  sailing  vessels,  which  sometimes  proved 
a  dangerous  assistance,  as  we  read:  "  Last  Saturday  afternoon,  as  a 
market  skiff  was  returning  home  with  four  men  and  one  woman  in, 
they  very  imprudently  took  hold  of  a  tow  rope  from  a  sloop  at  Cor- 
laer's  Hook  under  full  sail,  by  which  the  skiff  was  instantly  filled 
with  water,  and  overturned;  the  man  that  had  the  rope  held  fast 
till  he  was  taken  on  board  of  the  sloop,  the  other  four  were  thrown 
oat  of  the  skiff;  when,  fortunately,  the  three  men,  one  of  whom  could 

•  N.  Y.  Joornal,  July  23, 1772. 


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188  FLT   MARKET. 

only  swim,  got  fast  of  the  boat,  and  in  attempting  to  get  hold  of  her 
bottom,  she  turned  np  again  with  the  woman  in  her,  who  had  come 
up  under  the  boat,  and  taken  hold  of  one  of  the  benches;  they  then 
all  got  hold  of  the  skiff,  and  just  kept  their  heads  aboye  water  till 
Mr.  Morgan,  ship-carpenter,  and  another  man,  in  a  small  boat,  at 
the  risque  of  their  lives,  took  them  off,  or  they  must  haye  perished 
with  cold  or  been  drowned."* 

The  principal  part  of  the  farmers  and  gardeners  near  the  oily, 
during  the  Revolution,  were  engaged  in  the  war,  either  on  the  one 
side  or  the  other,  which  obliged  the  women  and  boys  to  labor  in  the 
fields  raising  such  products  as  they  were  able;  and  then, 

*<  The  coantry  maidB  with  Muioe  to  market  come, 
And  cany  loada  of  tattered  moaej  home." 

They  came  rowing  down  past  the  numerous  guards  and  sentinelfl  to 
the  city,  being  protected  usually  with  a  "pass." 

From  "Poems  of  the  Olden  Time,"  we  have  a  suitable  descrip* 
tionof 

"THE   MARKET   GIRL.'' 

*^  At  dawn  of  day,  from  short  repoie, 
At  hoon  that  mifi^t  all  towna-men  ahame, 
To  catch  oar  money,  round  or  tqnare, 
She  fhnn  the  Groves  ot  Flatbmh  came, 
With  Kail  and  Cabbage— fresh  and  fahr. 

At  Brooklyn  wharff,  in  travelling  trim, 
Arrived  an  honr  before  the  San, 
Yonng  Charon's  boat  receives  her  storea, 
Across  the  wavy  waste  they  skim ; 
And  thus  they,  laughing,  come  to  town, 
She  at  the  helm,  and  he,  the  oar. 

Fall  early  taught  the  arts  of  gain, 
No  sharping  knave  that  walks  the  street, 
(Tho'  versed  in  all  the  tricks  of  trade,) 
No  city  nymph,  or  powdered  swain, 
With  all  their  art,  can  hope  to  cheat 
A  bargain  flrom  this  coantry  maid. 

The  market  done,  her  cash  seoor'd, 
She  homeward  takes  her  wonted  way ; 
The  painted  chest,  behind  the  door, 
(With  many  a  golden  guinea  stor'd,) 
Reedves  the  gainings  of  the  day ; 
Laid  up— to  see  the  sun  no  more  I 

Sweet  nymph  I  why  all  this  canaeleas  pain, 
Such  early  toil,  and  evening  care. 
This  hoarding  for  the  age  to  come ! 
If  he  that  courts  you,  courts  in  vain, 
And  you,  regardless  of  an  heir. 
Refuse,  alas  I  to  take  him  home."t 
•  N.  T.  Packet,  Janaary  9, 1787.  f  Frenean. 


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FLY   MARKET.  139 

"  The  ferries  between  Brooklyn  and  New  York/'  says  Mr.  Jero- 
tnus  Johnson,  aboat  the  year  1777,  "  were  under  the  suryeillance 
of  a  military  guard.  All  the  inhabitants  were  compelled  to  obtain 
passports  for  themselves  and  their  families,  by  name,  to  cross  the  fer* 
ries;  and  eyery  market^boat,  with  her  hands,  were  licensed  to  come 
to  the  city.  Nor  was  this  all.  Every  farmer  or  person  who  wished 
to  take  any  goods  from  New  York,  was  compelled  to  take  a  bill  of 
the  goods  to  the  police  office,  in  the  city,  for  a  permit  to  take  the 
same  from  the  city.  Every  permit  cost  two  shillings.  The  passports 
to  cross  the  ferries,  and  the  licenses  of  the  market-boats,  were  renew- 
ed  and  paid  for  every  year.  In  this  manner,  favorites  were  provided 
for.  During  the  war,  a  continual  trade  was  carried  on  between 
favored  individuals  of  the  British  and  treacherous  Americans.''* 

The  ferry  which  landed  at  the  foot  of  this  market,  and  the  in- 
creased trade  in  the  year  1761,  with  the  numerous  market  and  other 
vessels  that  crowded  into  this  Fly  Market  Slip— the  larger  ones 
having  the  powerful  advantage,  generally  used  it— caused  a  law  to 
be  passed  in  that  year, ''  That  no  sloop,  boat,  or  vessel,  except  small 
craft,  such  as  ferry-boats,  market-boats,  pettiaugers,  and  canoes, 
shall  come  within  the  slip" — "  at  the  end  of  the  common  sewer 
(that  leads  under  the  marke^hou^e,  commonly  called  and  known  by 
the  name  of  the  Fly  Market,)  that  empties  itself  into  the  East 
River,  under  the  penalty  of  forty  shillings." 

An  excellent  article  from  "  Oensoba,"  in  showing  the  scarcity 
and  the  eagerness  of  procuring  provisions,  appeared  two  years 
after,  in  the  N.  Y.  Gazette,  January  10, 1768,  where  the  Lady  says, 
"I  have  frequently  observed,  and  sometimes  felt,  great  rudeness  and 
ill  manners  in  our  public  markets;  especially  when  any  kind  of 
provision  appeared  of  which  there  was  a  scarcity.  I  have  seen 
people  press  and  shove  with  such  rudeness  and  violence,  as  suffi- 
ciently shew'd  an  intention  truly  hostile,  and  that  force  alone  could 
determine  the  purchasers;  and  sometimes  the  prey  has  been  seized, 
and  in  danger  of  being  torn  to  pieces,  by  two  furious  combatants, 
equally  voracious,  who  seemed,  by  their  actions,  to  be  upon  the 
point  of  starving,  and  to  contend  for  their  lives.  I,  who  am  a 
woman,  unused  to  war,  and  of  a  peaceable  disposition,  have  been 
obliged  to  give  up  my  pretensions  to  the  goods,  half  purchased,  and 
give  place  to  one  of  more  strength  and  resolution,  being  not  quite 
reduoed  to  the  necessity  of  fighting  or  starving. 

''AH  that  are  weak  and  peaceable  like  myself,  have  been  excluded 
from  purchasing  in  the  market,  by  rudeness  and  force.  It  is  to  be 
hoped  that  persons  guilty  of  such  misbehavior  need  only  to  be  told 
•  Naval  Magaiiiie,  toL  L,  pi.  6«a 


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140  ^^^  MARKET. 

of  it,  to  avoid  it,  and  as  they  value  their  own  liberty,  not  encroach 
upon  that  of  their  neighbors*  Sach  conduct  has  also  a  direct  ten* 
dency  to  raise  the  price  of  provisions  in  the  market,  to  the  extrav- 
agant price  that  we  all  have  had  reason  to  complain  of.'' 

The  prices  of  provisions  had  become  so  exorbitant,  that  the 
''principal  freemen  and  freeholders  asked  for  a  law  to  r^ulate 
the  prices  of  all  kinds  of  provisions;"  which  subject  was  before 
the  authorities  on  the  15th  of  August  same  year,  (1768.)  They 
set  forth,  "  That  in  all  populous  citys  the  regulation  of  the  publick 
marketts,  respecting  the  prices  of  provisions,  hath  always  been  es- 
teemed a  matter  of  great  importance  to  the  inhabitants,  and  worthy 
the  attention  of  the  publick ;  that  the  petitioners  had  for  some  time 
past  observed  many  of  the  common  necessaries  of  life  sold  in  the 
marketts  in  this  city  at  exorbitant  prices,  considerably  higher  than 
in  any  of  the  neighboring  colonies;  and  wish  the  Board  to  regulate 
and  assize  butchers'  meat,  and  such  other  provisions  as  might  be 
thought  to  require  the  like  regulations." 

This  was  referred  to  a  committee,  to  inquire  what  power  the 
Board  had,  and  whether  they  can  legally  do  so.  They  reported, 
on  the  24th  inst.,  "  That  they  are  of  the  opinion  the  Board  are 
fully  authorized  to  regulate  and  assize  the  prices  of  all  kinds  of 
provisions  set  to  sale  in  this  city.  And  to  expedite  the  work,  the 
Committee  presented  the  following  ordinance,"  which  became  the 
law,  and  is  an  interesting  document: 

A  Lorn  for  Assidng  aU  Kinds  of  Victuals  to  he  set  for  Sale  in  the 

Public  Markets. 
PuBLiBHEi)  IN  Common  Council,  August  24,  1768. 

Forasmuch  as,  through  the  avarice  of  those  who  usually  supply 
this  City  with  provisions,  the  prices  of  all  manner  of  victuals 
daily  brought  to  market  for  the  sustentation  of  its  Inhabitants  are 
grown  excessively  great,  and  not  only  ruinous  to  Families  of  the 
poorer  sort,  but  intolerable  even  to  people  of  better  estate:  In 
order,  therefore,  to  remedy  this  great  and  growing  evil,  and  to  fix 
and  establirii  between  the  Buyer  and  Seller  reasonable  prices  for 
all  sorts  of  Victuals  hereafter  to  be  brought  to  market,  and  to  reg- 
ulate the  sale  thereof,  except  the  articles  hereinafter  excepted : 

I.  Be  it  ordained  by  the  Mayor,  Aldermen,  and  Commonalty  of 
the  City  of  New  York,  in  Common  Council  convened,  and  it  is 
hereby  ordained  by  the  authority  of  the  same,  That  no  kinds  of 
Provision  or  Victuals  whatsoever,  hereafter  to  be  brought  to  this 
City,  or  offered,  or  set  for  sale  or  sold  within  the  same,  (except 
live  Fish,  Bread,  Flour,  and  salted  Beef  in  Barrels  and  half-Barrels, 
and  salted  Pork  in  Barrels  and  half-Barrels,  and  Butter  and  Milk, 


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FLY   MARKET.  141 

and  Hog's  Lard  in  Firkins,  and  Oysters,  Clams,  and  Mnscles,)  shall 
be  set,  offered,  or  exposed  to  sale,  or  sold,  at  any  other  place  or 
places  whatsoever,  other  than  the  Public  and  Common  Market- 
Houses  of  this  City,  under  the  penalty  oi  forty  shSELings  for  every 
offense ;  to  be  paid  by  him  or  them  so  setting,  offering,  or  exposing 
the  same  for  sale,  or  selling  the  same ;  and  that  the  like  penalty 
oi forty  ahiUings  for  every  offense  be  paid  by  the  Buyer. 

II.  And  be  it  further  ordained  by  the  authority  aforesaid.  That  no 
regrator,  huckster,  or  other  person,  usually  practising  the  buying  of 
provision  or  yictuals,  such  as  are  hereby  directed  to  be  sold,  or  are 
usually  sold  in  the  common  markets,  with  design  to  sell  them  again, 
shall  either  by  himself,  or  any  other  or  others,  purchase  or  buy  any 
sort  of  provision  or  victual,  before  or  earlier  than  the  hour  of  eleven 
of  the  dock  in  the  forenoon,  in  any  day  throughout  the  year,  under 
the  penalty  of  three  pounds^  to  be  paid  by  the  offender  for  every 
such  offence. 

III.  And  be  it  further  ordained  by  the  authority  aforesaid,  That 
no  person  or  persons  whatsoever  shall  hereafter  presume  to  house,  or 
put  under  cover,  except  in  the  public  markets,  or  conceal  any  sort 
of  provision  or  victual  whatsoever  brought,  or  to  be  brought  to 
this  city  for  sale,  (except  as  before  excepted ;)  but  that  every  person 
and  persons  that  shall  hereafter  set,  or  expose  for  sale,  or  sell,  or 
shall  bring  to  this  city  with  design  to  set  or  expose  to  sale,  or  sell, 
any  sort  of  provision  or  victual  whatsoever,  (except  as  before  ex- 
cepted,) shall  brbg  or  carry  the  same,  or  cause  the  same  to  be 
brought  or  carried  straitways,  if  the  same  shall  arrive  at  this  city 
after  sunriee,  and  one  hour  before  sunset,  to  some  one  or  other  of 
the  public  market-houses  of  this  city ;  and  if  the  same  shall  so  arrive 
after  an  hour  before  the  setting  of  the  sun,  and  before  sunrise,  then 
to  be  carried  immediately  after  sunrise  to  some  one  or  other  of  the 
public  marke^houses  of  this  city :  and  her  or  they  shall  there  openly 
and  publicly  expose  the  same  to  sale,  under  tibe  penalty  of  three 
pounds,  to  be  paid  by  the  offender  herein  for  every  offence;  and 
that  the  person  or  persons  who  shall  permit  or  suffer  any  provision 
or  victual  whatsoever  (except  as  before  excepted)  to  be  housed  or 
put  under  cover  within  his,  her,  or  their  houses,  out^houses,  build- 
ings, or  yards,  during  the  time  hereby  provided  for  bringing  the 
same  into  the  public  markets,  shall  forfeit  the  like  penalty  for  every 
offence* 

IV.  And  be  it  further  ordained  by  the  authority  aforesaid,  That 
the  prices  for  all  sorts  of  provisions  and  victuals  shall  hereafter  be 
as  follows;  that  is  to  say,  the  prices  of  beef  and  pork  shall  be  as 
follows,  viz.: 


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142  FLY   MARKET. 

For  beef,  from  and  including  the  first  day  of  March  to  and  in- 
cluding the  last  day  of  August^  a  price  not  exceeding/ovT^j^ence  by 
the  pound  weight;  and  from  and  including  the  first  day  of  Septem* 
ber  to  and  including  the  last  day  of  February,  a  price  not  exceed- 
ing three-pence  by  the  pound  weight ;  the  tallow  included  at  the  same 
rates,  when  the  beef  is  sold  by  the  quarter. 

For  a  bullock's  head,  not  exceeding  one  shilling. 

For  a  neat's  tongue,  not  exceeding  one  shilling. 

For  pork,  from  and  including  the  first  day  of  March  to  and  in- 
cluding the  last  day  of  October,  a  price  not  exceeding  four-pence 
half -penny  by  the  pound  weight;  and  from  and  including  the  first 
day  of  November  to  and  including  the  last  day  of  February,  a  price 
not  exceeding  three-pence  halfpenny  by  the  pound  weight;  and, 

For  roasting  pigs,  by  the  pound  weight, /vc^penoe. 

For  Veal,  from  and  including  the  first  day  of  March  to  and  in- 
cluding the  last  day  of  August,  a  price  not  excee^ng  four  pence  by 
the  pound  weight;  and  from  and  including  the  first  day  of  Septem- 
ber to  and  including  the  last  day  of  February,  a  price  not  exceeding 
fivepence  by  the  pound  weight. 

For  a  calve's  head  and  pluck,  and  the  four  feet,  eighteen  pence. 

For  mutton,  from  and  including  the  first  day  of  July  to  and  in- 
cluding the  last  day  of  November,  a  price  not  exceeding  threepence 
half -penny  by  the  pound  weight;  and  from  and  including  the  first 
day  of  December  to  and  including  the  last  day  of  June,  a  price  not 
exceeding/oMr-^peTioe  halfpenny  by  the  pound  weight. 

For  lamb,  from  and  including  the  first  day  of  March  to  and  in- 
cluding the  last  day  of  April,  a  price  not  exceeding  ninepence  by 
the  pound  weight;  and  from  and  including  the  first  day  of  May  to 
and  including  the  last  day  of  August,  a  price  not  exceeding  five* 
pence  by  the  pound  weight;  and  from  and  after  that  day  to  and  in- 
cluding the  last  day  of  February,  at  no  greater  price  by  the  pound 
weight  than  mutton  is  hereby  directed  to  be  sold  at  during  that 
period. 

For  Venison,  not  exceeding /rc^ncc  by  the  pound  weight. 

And  the  prices  of  poultry,  as  well  wild  fowl  as  tame,  shall  not 
exceed  the  respective  rates  herein  annexed  to  the  names  of  the  sev- 
eral species  or  sorts,  to  wit: 

For  a  full-grown  dunghill  fowl,  whether  cock  or  hen,  one  shilling. 

For  BLpuUet,  after  midsummer,  nine-pence. 

For  a  chicken  of  the  larger  sort,  seven-pence. 

For  a  chicken  of  the  smaller  sort,  fivepence. 

For  a  large  fat  goose,  eighteen  pence. 

For  a  green  goose,  fifteen  pence. 


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FLY  MARKET.  143 

For  a  large  cock  turiey^/our  skSUng. 

For  a  large  hen  turkey ^  two  shiUing  and  eixpeinot. 

For  a  oock  chicken  turkey ,  two  ekiUinge. 

For  a  hen  chicken  turkey,  eighteen  penoe^ 

For  a  large  fiill-grown  tame  duck,  one  shiUing. 

For  a  duck  not  full  grown,  mne-pence. 

For  a  dozen  wHd  pidgeons,  eighteen  pence;  and  in  the  like  propor- 
tion for  a  greater  or  less  number. 

For  a  quaU,  one  penny  half -penny. 

For  a  heolh  hen^  fifteen  pence. 

For  a  partridge,  one  ahiUing. 

For  a  Nock  duck,  or  other  wHd  duck  of  the  larger  sort,  one  BhSHing. 

For  a  teal,  or  other  wild  fowl  of  the  smaller  sort,  sixpence. 

For  a  large  wild  cock  turkey,  five  shiUinga. 

For  a  large  wild  hen  turkey,  three  shSUinga  and  sixpence. 

For  a  unld  cock  chicken  turkey,  two  ahUling  and  three-pence. 

For  a  wHd  hen  chidcen  turkey,  one  ahiUing  and  ninepence. 

For  a  large  wUd  gooae,  two  ahiUinga. 

For  a  wild  gooae  not  full  grown,  eighteen  pence. 

For  a  brandt,  fifteen  pence. 

For  anipea  of  the  larger  sort,  by  the  dozen,  fifteen  pence;  and  in 
that  proportion  for  a  greater  or  smaller  number. 

For  anipea  of  the  middling  sort,  by  the  dozen,  tu^ve-pence;  and 
in  that  proportion  for  a  greater  or  smaller  number. 

For  anipea  of  the  smaller  sort,  and  other  small  birds,  by  the 
dozen,  aixpefice;  md  after  that  rate  for  a  greater  or  smaller  number. 

And  for  twenty  eggs,  from  and  including  the  first  day  of  March 
unto  and  including  the  last  day  of  October,  not  exceeding  one  ahU- 
ling; and  so  in  that  proportion  for  a  greater  or  smaller  number; 
and  from  and  including  the  first  day  of  November  to  and  including 
the  last  day  of  February,  not  exceeding  one  penny  for  each  egg. 

And  for  freah  butter,  from  the  first  day  of  May,  inclusive,  to  and 
including  the  last  day  of  October,  not  exceeding  ninepence,  by  the 
pound  weight;  and  from  the  first  day  of  November,  inclusive,  unto 
and  including  the  last  day  of  April,  not  exceeding  twdve-pence,  by 
the  pound  weight.  (In  the  month  of  April,  1762, ''  Freeh  butter  sold 
in  our  market  at  2/6  a  pound.") 

And  that  the  prices  {or  fiah  shall  not  exceed  the  sums  herein  an- 
nexed to  the  several  sorts  or  species,  viz. : 

For  a  large  baaa,  by  the  pound  weight,  two-pence. 

For  a  amaU  baaa,  by  the  pound  weight,  tvH>p^!nce  halfpenny. 

For  a  Hachfiah,  aeorbaaat  and  aheqhhead,  by  the  pound  weight, 
three  coppera. 


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144  ^^^  MARKET. 

For  K  fresh  cod,  by  the  pound  weighty  four^pence. 

YoT  fresh-water  perch^  by  the  pound  weightj/ourjsefioe. 

For  eaU-waJter  perch,  by  the  pound  weighty  three  coppers. 

For  trout  fish,  or  torn  cod,  one  shiiUng  by  the  dozen ;  and  in  propoi^ 
tion  for  a  greater  or  lesser  number. 

For  lobsters,  by  the  pound  weight,  sixpence. 

For  oysters  in  the  shell,  clear  of  weeds,  beards,  and  empty  shells^ 
tuH)  shillings  by  the  bushel,  heaped  up,  and  after  that  rate  for  a 
greater  or  lesser  quantity. 

For  opened  oysters,  by  the  gallon,  three  shillings}  and  after  that 
rate  for  a  greater  or  lesser  quantity. 

For  dams,  by  the  hundred,  nine-pence. 

For. milk,  from  and  including  thefirst.day  of  May  to  and  including 
the  last  day  of  October,  not  exceeding  four  coppers  by  the  quart; 
and  from  and  including  the  first  day  of  November  to  and  including 
the  last  day  of  April,  not  exceeding /t;e  coppers  by  the  quart. 

For  American  cheese,  four-pence  half -penny  by  the  pound  weight. 

V.  And  be  it  further  ordained  by  the  authority  aforesaid,  That 
if  any  person  or  persons  whatsoever  shall,  at  any  time  or  times,  from 
and  after  the  fifteenth  day  of  September  next,  presume  to  set,  offer,  or 
expose  to  sale^  or  sell  any  species  of  provision  or  victuals  whatso- 
ever hereby  directed  to  be  sold  in  the  public  or  common  markets,  or 
whereof  the  price  or  prices  are  hereby  fixed,  at  any  greater  or 
higher  rate  or  rates,  price  or  prices,  than  is  hereby  fixed,  he,  she,  or 
they  so  offending,  shall  forfeit  and  pay  for  every  such  offence  the  re- 
spective sums  following :  that  is  to  say,  for  every  such  offence  in  or 
relating  to  the  sale  of  beef,  the  sum  of  three  pounds;  and  for  every 
such. offence  in  or  relating  to  the  sale  of  smaller  meats,  the  sum  of 
thirty  shilling;  and  for  every  offence  in  or  relating  to  the  sale  of 
poultry,  whether  vnld  fowl  or  tame,  or  in  or  relating  to  the  sale  of 
fsh,  or  any  other  article  or  articles  of  provision  not  here  enumerated, 
the  prices  whereof  are  above  fixed,  the  sum  of  ten  shillings;  and  that 
every  purchaser,  in  such  case  or  cases,  shall  forfeit  and  pay  the  liko 
respective  sums  for  every  respective  offence;  and  if  the  offending 
purchaser  be  a  slave,  he  or  she  shall  receive  such  punishment  at  the 
public  whipping-post,  as  the  Mayor,  Recorder,  or  any  Alderman  of 
this  city,  «hall  in  his  discretion  think  fit,  unless  the  master  or  mis-- 
tress  of  such  slave  will  and  do  immediately  pay  the  fine  or  forfeiture 
hereby  imposed  for  such  offence. 

VI.  And  be  it  further  enacted  by  the  authority  aforesaid,  That 
the  fines  and  forfeitures  that  shall  or  may  accrue  or  arise  upon  or 
by  the  breach  of  this  ordinance,  or  any  article,  matter,  clause,  or 
thing  whatsoever  in  the  same  contained,  shall  and  may  be  recover- 


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FLT   MARKET.  145 

ed  before  the  Mayor,  Recorder,  or  any  one  of  the  Aldermen  of  this 
city,  by  any  person  or  persons  who  will  sue  for  the  same ;  the  one 
moieiy  thereof,  when  recovered,  to  be  his,  her,  or  their  use ;  and  the 
other  moieiy  thereof  to  be  paid  by  him,  her,  or  them  to  the  Ohnrch- 
Wardens  of  this  city,  for  the  use  of  the  poor  thereof. 

Published  August  the  24th,  1763.  By  order  of  the  Oommon 
Council.  Aug.  V.  Oobtlakdt,  G^Jk. 

This  law  created  a  great  sensation  among  the  market  people,  and 
more  especially  the  butchers  and  farmers,  who  were  very  indignant, 
and  somewhat  contemptuous.  The  newspapers  took  hold  of  them, 
and  handled  them  *'  without  gloves/'  as  appears  by  the  following 
effusions: 

"  There  was  perhaps  never  a  more  just  or  necessary  law  passed 
in  this  province,  than  the  late  By-Law  for  regulating  the  prices  of 
provisions  sold  in  our  markets.  For  the  impositions  of  the  butchers, 
and  the  extravagant  demands  of  some  of  our  country  people,  have 
loudly  called  for  redress,  and  must  soon  have  proved  to  the  poorer 
sort  absolutely  ruinous. 

"As  to  the  affront  offered  to  the  dignity  of  the  butchers,  and  the 
airs  they  assume  on  the  occasion,  I  doubt  not  they  will  soon  be 
inade  sensible  that  the  law  is  not,  like  a  sirloin,  to  be  rescinded 
with  broad-ax  and  cleaver;  and  should  they  refuse  to  continue  their 
business  on  the  law's  taking  place,  I  hope  the  gentlemen  of  the  city 
will  not  hesitate  a  moment  to  raise  an  adequate  sum,  by  subscrip- 
tion, to  supply  the  markets  at  a  lower  rate  than  that  prescribed  by 
the  ordinance ;  upon  which  the  Corporation,  'tis  hoped,  will  instani* 
ly  turn  every  butcher's  stall  out  of  the  market,  nor  ever  suffer 
tliem  to  be  replaced,  till  after  suitable  proofs  of  contrition  and  re- 
morse. 

'•  For  we  have  really  been  imposed  upon  by  one  of  the  most  im- 
pudent combinations  that  was  ever  suffered  among  a  free  and  think- 
ing  people.  Was  it  not  astonishing,  and  beyond  all  human  toler* 
ance,  that  b^eef  should  be  sold  from  7d.  to  8d.  per  lb.,  when  it  might 
be  offered  for  3d.  and  4d.,  and  yield  a  sufficient  profit  I  Cattle  were 
perhaps  never  plentier  or  cheaper  in  the  country  than  the  greater 
part  of  the  time  during  which  this  exorbitant  price  has  been  enac^ 
ed.  Nay,  what  is  more  notorious,  than  that  beef  is  sold  at  4d.  per 
lb.  in  the  neighboring  provinces,  and  in  some  parts  of  this  very 
province  ?  Why,  then,  should  this  city  be  under  the  peculiar  curse 
of  being  fleec'd,  or  rather  flea'd,  by  the  but<5her  ?  In  a  word,  was 
not  21d.  and  3d.  per  lb.  reckon'd  a  good  profit,  when  he  gave  from 
jC5  to  £6  for  a  b«ft8t ;  and  is  not,  therefore,  8d.  per  lb.,  when  a  beast 
of  equal  weight  and  goodness  can  be  now  purchased  at  the  same 
Vol.  I.— 10 


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146  FLY   MARKET. 

rate,  intolerable  and  extortious  ?  Besides,  what  title  has  a  batcher, 
who  ought  to  be  considered  in  the  light  of  a  common  laborer,  (and 
special  little  doth  he  labor,)  to  aceamulate  riches?  Wou'd  not 
three  or  fonr  hundred  pounds  per  annum  be  sufficient  for  the  rank 
and  station  of  a  slaughterer  of  sheep  and  oxen  ?  And  more  than 
that  wou'd  arise  fipom  the  profit  of  a  penny  per  lb. ;  whereas  I  am 
confident  they  make  aboye  three-pence.  Plebeaxus.'' 

"  Plebeanus  "  had  not  so  high  an  opinion  of  the  butchers  on  this 
side  of  the  "  water,"  as  the  same  Goyemment  had  for  them,  a  few 
years  before,  on  the  other  side.  The  ''London  Review"  of  No- 
yember,  1749,  says :  "  A  grant  has  passed  the  Great  Seal,  wherein 
His  Majesty  is  pleased  to  reincorporate  singular,  all  the  freemen  of 
the  art  of  butchers  of  the  City  of  London,  and  all  others  who 
now  use  and  exercise  the  art  within  the  said  city,  the  liberties  and 
suburbs  thereof,  or  in  any  place  within  two  miles  from  the  said  city, 
by  the  name  of  the  'Master  Wardens  and  CommonaUy  of  the  Art 
or  Mystery  of  Butchering  of  the  City  of  IxmdonJ  " 

We  now  turn  again  to  another  article  which  followed  "  Plebea- 
nus," found  in  the  **  N.  Y.  Gazette,"  dated  September  12,  1763. 
"  It  is,  I  think,  impossible  to  offer  a  stronger  argument  for  the  ne- 
cessity and  excellence  of  the  law  for  regulating  the  price  of  provi- 
sions, &c.,  than  that  it  gives  so  great  disgust  to  our  butchers,  and 
the  neighboring  farmers,  who  used  to  supply  our  markets."  ''  It  is 
evident,  from  the  clamor  of  the  country  people,  that  they  did  not 
intend  to  lower  their  prices  without  such  legal  compulsion.  They, 
indeed,  pretend  that  they  would  have  done  it  voluntarily:  but 
when  ?  Why,  at  the  swift-approaching  period  when  the  city  should 
be  so  impoverished  as  to  be  incapable  of  purchasing."  *'  If  they 
dislike  the  law,  it  is  on  account  of  the  appraisement ;  and  if  they 
are  dissatisfied  with  the  appraisement,  it  is  because  they  would  have 
demanded  more;  and  if  they  would  have  demanded  more,  it  was 
necessary  to  prevent  them."  "  Compulsion  must "  "  be  called  in  to 
remedy  the  defect  of  voluntary  justice ;  and  the  force  of  law  to  sup- 
ply the  want  of  botods.  With  such  a  power  every  community  must, 
in  the  nature  of  things,  be  invested,  as  to  those  particulars  which 
are  brought  among  them  for  their  own  consumption ;  and  with  such 
a  power  the  Corporation  of  this  City  is  invested  by  its  Charter, 
which  is  confirmed  by  act  of  Assembly.  And  whether  it  was  not 
high  time  to  exert  this  power,  when  beef  was  raised  to  8d.,  butter 
to  2s.  3d.  per  lb.,  and  veal  to  14s.  a  quarter,  and  most  other  escu- 
lents in  proportion." 

The  farmers  or  country  people  took  a  bold  stand,  and  sent  through 
the  Gazette  {Sept.,  \9th  inst,,)  a  spicy  letter  of  invitation  to  the  cit- 


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FLY   MARKET.  147 

ixens,  to  step  np  into  Westchester  County,  on  Tuesdays  and  Friday?, 
and  purchase  for  cash  such  articles  as  they  have  to  sell ;  and  from 
the  tenor  of  it,  we  suppose  they  were  not  guided  by  the  established 
city  prices. 

This  letter  is  dated  from  Philipsburgh,  f  Westchester  County  J 
Sept.  12, 1768:  "Whereas  the  gentlemen  of  the  City  of  New  York 
have  been  pleased  to  make  a  law,  and  prefix  a  certain  price  upon 
country  produce,  such  as  eatables  or  provisions,  brought  to  the  City 
of  New  York ;  and  lay  a  certain  fine  upon  all  persons  that  give  a 
greater  or  larger  price  for  what  they  buy.  But  they  forgot  to  in- 
sert in  their  laws,  that  no  lesser  prices  should  be  offered,  or  given, 
under  the  same  fine.  We  thought  we  were  born  free  Englishmen, 
and  had  the  liberty,  as  such,  to  sell  our  own  effects  at  our  own  lib- 
erty. But  finding  the  case  not  to  be  so,  we,  the  inhabitants,  and 
country  back,  have  fixed  upon  a  store-house  on  a  dock  at  Martling's 
Cove,  (Tarrytown;)  when,  on  every  Tuesday  and  Friday  in  the 
week,  the  county  inhabitants  do  bring  all  sorts  of  country  produce 
to  sell  there ;  and  where  all  gentlemen  and  ladies  of  the  Corpora- 
tion of  the  City  of  New  York  may  be  supplied  for  their  cash :  for 
no  boat  or  craft  will,  after  the  fifteenth  day  of  September  instant, 
carry  off  any  victual  kind,  upon  a  fine  of  twenty  shillings. 

"We  are  your  humble  servants,  and  friends  to  the  liberty  of 
EfiglishmenJ^ 

But  few  country  people  brought  their  butter  to  market,  and  con- 
sequently a  short  supply  was  the  result,  although  they  were  threat- 
ened through  the  "  press,"  by  the  merchants,  with  importations  of 
that  article.  They  also  appeared  anxious  to  impress  on  the  minds 
of  certain  producers  rights  which  the  laws  granted  them,  of  which 
the  following  will  more  folly  explain,  as  taken  from  the  N.  Y.  6a- 
xctte,  October  8d  following:  "  The  better  to  undeceive  the  people  of 
this  province,"  (the  printer  of  the  Gazette  was  particularly  requested 
to  insert  in  his  paper,)  "  those  of  New  Jersey,  Connecticut,  &  in 
their  being  prevented  from  bringing  their  cattle  to  town  by  a  report 
industriously  propagated  amongst  them,  in  direct  contradiction  to 
the  liberty  intended  and  given  by  the  law"—"  that  every  day  in  the 
week  (Sundays  excepted)  be,  and  are  hereby  appointed  public  mar- 
ket days,  within  the  said  city,  from  the  sun-rising  to  sun-setting; 
and  that  the  country  people,  and  others,  resorting  to  the  said  mar- 
kets, may  stand  or  sit  in  such  part  or  parts  thereof  as  are  not  from 
time  to  time  particularly  appropriated  and  allotted  to  other  person 
or  persons,  and  there  vend  their  flesh,  fish,  poultry,  herbs,  fruit,  eggs, 
butter,  cheese,  bacon,  and  other  provisions  and  commodities,  in  the 
public  markets."    A  gentle  hint  also  accompanies  the  above,  in  the 


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148  FLY   MARKET. 

following  language:  "  We  are  credibly  informed  that  the  merchants 
of  this  city  expect  in  a  few  weeks,  from  Ireland,  about  6,000  firkins 
of  best  Irish  butter ;  on  the  arrival  of  which,  'tis  not  impossible  the 
country  people  who  used  to  supply  our  markets  may  be  obliged  to 
purchase  large  quantities  of  aaliJ^  Sure  enough,  "on  Tuesday  last 
(25^A  December)  arrived  here  the  ship  Pitt,  Captain  Montgomery, 
in  five  weeks  from  Belfast.  It  ia  said  she  has  brought  upwards  of 
2,000  firkins  of  choice  butter,  which  sells  cheap;  and  as  great  quan* 
tities  are  daily  expected  from  the  same  quarter,  the  country  stomachs 
will  soon  be  brought  to."  Then  we  find  the  prices  had  induced  frauds 
in  the  making  of  it,  of  which  "  a  quantity  of  bad  butter  was  seized  in 
our  market  belonging  to  one  Mr.  Rosea,  of  Staten  Island ;  the  rolls 
were  very  artfully  cased  over  with  excellent/rc»A  butter,  and  the  in- 
side so  bad  that  it  was  fit  for  no  other  use  than  the  soap-tub." 

The  reputation  of  the  city  and  province  was  anything  but  good 
in  the  packing  of  this  article,  and  this  reputation  it  appeared  to  have 
enjoyed  many  years  previous.  This  fact  is  strongly  shown  in  the 
"  Independent  Reflector,"  May  10, 1753,  where  the  writer  says,  "  I 
cannot  learn  that  the  packing  of  butter  for  exportation  was  ever 
regulated  by  any  act  of  this  province,  tho'  it  constitutes  a  branch  of 
our  trade  so  considerable,  that  ten  thousand  firkins  have  in  one  year 
been  brought  to  market  in  this  city.  Nor  is  there  any  reason  for 
supposing  it  would,  under  proper  regulations,  be  inferior  to  the  but- 
ter  of  Ireland.  Yet  by  the  frequent  frauds  committed,  and  the  little 
care  generally  taken  in  its  packing,  it  hath  so  greatly  suffered  in  its 
character,  at  almost  every  market  whither  we  transmit  it,  that  while 
there  is  any  Irish  butter  to  be  purchased,  it  will  not  sell,  save  at  a 
price  too  low  for  a  reasonable  profit.  In  proof  of  those  reiterated 
frauds  and  complaints,  I  believe  I  might  appeal  to  every  merchant 
trading  to  the  West  Indies.  I  have  myself  seen  twenty  odd  pounds 
of  salt  taken  out  of  one  firkin ;  and  not  only  hogs'  lard  and  tallow, 
but  even  stones  and  brick  have  been  sold  for  merchantable  butter." 

This  Assize  Law  also  created  a  great  commotion  among  the 
butchers,  who  were  very  indignant;  and  some  even  defied  the  au- 
thorities. Complaints  were  made  on  the  23d  December  (same  year) 
of  two  of  the  most  prominent  of  them,  which  appears  in  the  follow- 
ing language:  "  Whereas  it  hath  this  day  been  represented  to  this 
Board,  that  John  Carpenter,  butcher,  hath  openly  and  contemptuous- 
ly declared  that  he  would  sell  his  beef  for  4.^d.  per  9b.  in  ^ite  of  all 
the  wise  heads  that  made  the  law  could  do,  or  words  to  that  effect." 
"  He  is  ordered  to  appear  before  this  Board,  at  the  house  of  Walter 
Brock,  Inn-keeper,  near  the  City  Hall,  to-morrow  morningy  to  show 
cause  why  he  diould  not  be  disfranchised." 


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FLY   MARKET.  149 

Jacob  Arden,  another  butcher,  was  also  "  complained  of  for  speak- 
ing in  contemptuous  manner  and  publicly  violating  the  law  for  as- 
sizing  all  kinds  of  provisions.  The  Board  request  the  Mayor  to 
remove  him  out  of  the  markets  until  he  shall  have  obtained  the 
Freedom  of  the  City/' 

The  next  day,  John  Carpenter,  of  Kings  County,  (L.  I.,)  butcher, 
who  claims  the  Freedom  of  the  City,  attended,  and  William  Bayard, 
Esq.,  proved  on  oath  the  charge  against  him.  The  Board  *'  ordered 
his  license  taken  from  him,  turned  out  of  market,  and  also  disfran- 
chised." 

This  "Freedom  of  the  City"  is  noticed  by  a  "freeholder  of  the 
Second  Ward,"  who  says,  "  The  Charter  permits  the  Corporation  to 
exact  the  sum  of  five  pounds  (besides  eight  shillings  to  the  Mayor, 
seven  and  sixpence  to  the  Clerk,  and  one  shilling  to  the  Cryer,  pre- 
scribed by  law,)  of  every  merchant  or  trader,  as  the  price  of  his  ad- 
mission to  the  privileges  of  a  freeman;  and  twenty  shillings  for  a 
mechanic  or  laborer,  with  the  above  perquisites."* 

A  committee  of  citizens  of  the  First  Ward,  in  the  month  of  Au- 
gust, 1797,  petitioned  the  Common  Council  to  grant  b,  freeTnanship 
to  a  certain  person  whom  they  wished  to  elect  as  a  Constable  for  that 
Ward.  They  state,  they  "have  long  been  unfortunate  in  the  choice 
of  their  constables,  and  wish  to  avoid  this,  if  possible,  in  future. 
In  their  endeavors  to  suppress  vice  and  disorder,  they  readily  dis- 
cover the  necessity  of  having  peace  oflBcers,  in  whom  confidence  can 
be  placed,  and  who  are  willing  to  discharge  their  duty.  They  have 
found  a  difficulty  in  discovering  a  person  of  this  description  willing 
to  accept  of  the  office,  but  are  informed,  with  an  opinion  that  Mr. 
(Philip)  Fnlkerson  will  answer  their  wishes  and  expectations.  To 
render  him  eligible  to  the  contemplated  office,  it  is  necessary  that 
he  diould  be  a  *  Freeman  of  the  City  J  "  They  "beg  leave  to  rec- 
ommend him  to  your  notice,  as  a  person  worthy  of  receiving  his 
/reafoiw." 

We  now  leave  this  subject,  and  turn  to  Carpenter  and  Arden, 
who  were  among  the  most  prominent  butchers  of  their  day ;  and 
although  they  were  found  guilty  and  punished,  yet  they  proved,  to 
the  satisfaction  of  the  Board,  that  meats,  &c.,  could  not  be  honestly 
and  profitably  sold  at  the  prices  assized  by  this  law.  The  Board 
having  had  the  subject  of  changing  the  cutsize  previously  under 
consideration,  at  the  same  meeting,  after  awarding  the  punishment 
to  these  butchers,  changed  the  prices,  as  will  be  shown  by  the 
Order:  "  That  for  the  future,  all  kinds  of  meat  be  sold  by  weight, 
and  that  the  price  of  beef  be  at  the  rate  of /our^^enoe,  hcUf-pennyt 
•  Miner7a,  Deo.  21, 1796. 


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150  FLT   MARKET. 

by  the  pound  weight;  pork,  five-pence,  half-penny;  veal,  (hind 
quarter,)  sixpence;  fore  quarter,  four-pence,  half-penny;  mutton, 
four-pence,  half-penny ;  fresh  butter,  one  shilling  and  three-pence: 
milk,  five  coppers  by  the  quart,"  &c. 

We  find  the  price  of  "milk"  is  noticed  in  this  Assize  Law,  but  it 
does  not  appear  that  it  was  then  allowed  to  be  sold  in  the  markets, 
if  we  may  judge  from  the  tenor  of  a  communication  addressed  to 
Mr.  Weyman,  "  Sib — I  am  surprised,  and  all  my  offspring  aston- 
ished, what  can  or  may  be  the  reasons  that  I  am  not  admitted  or 
ordered  into  the  public  markets  ?  Tho'  that  I  am  the  support  and 
only  nourishment  of  almost  every  creature,  the  poorer  sort  of  man- 
kind are  deprived  of  me,  as  they  cannot  bribe  my  bearers.  The 
richer  sort  do  enjoy  me,  by  the  means  of  bribes,  but  not  in  my  pu- 
rity ;  for  I  am  obliged  to  run  barefoot  every  evening  and  morning, 
through  so  much  water,  that  I  am  near  being  wasted  to  nothing* 
All  which  might  be  prevented  by  your  ordering  me  to  be  carried 
into  the  market-houses,  where  every  person,  rich  and  poor,  might 
enjoy  me  in  my  purity,  and  should  be  obliged  to  runn  the  risque  of 
being  entirely  drowned.  I  beg  some  people  will  take  this  into  ma- 
ture consideration,  and  they'l  oblige  many  a  person  and  their  hum- 
ble servant,  *  New  Milk.'  "♦ 

It  does  not  appear  that  milk  was  sold  in  the  markets  until  after 
the  "Revolution:"  then  "Bear  Market"  took  the  lead;  but  the 
citizens  were  usually  served  by  the  country  milkmen  and  women, 
who,  after  rounng  dotvn  or  up  to  the  city,  carried  it  from  house  to 
house  with  a  yoke,  in  two  kettles,  which  is  peculiarly  described  in  a 
"Traveler's  Letters"  as  follows:  "There  are  the  venders  of  milk: 
instead  of  awkwardly  traveling  along  with  a  heavy  bucket  of  milk 
in  one  hand  only,  they  are  thus  accoutred:  A  piece  of  wood,  (which 
I  call  a  yoke,)  about  two  feet  long,  is  made  to  fit  around  the  back 
of  the  neck,  and  rest  upon  the  shoulders.  To  each  end  is  affixed  a 
chain,  with  a  hook  at  the  end.  This  chain  is  of  such  length  as  to 
enable  them,  by  stooping  a  little,  to  hook  the  handles  of  two  large 
milk-vessels,  made  of  tin,  resembling  a  grocer's  tea-canisters.  One 
of  these  is  carried  on  each  side,  to  the  houses  of  their  customers. 
A  loud  cry  of  'Milk  come!'  awakened  me  from  a  late  sleep,  this 
morning ;  and  when  I  arose  and  went  to  the  window,  saw  a  Dutch- 
man thus  yoked."t  This  fashion  of  carrying  a  yoke  continued, 
with  a  few  milkmen,  up  to  as  late  as  1835. 

We  find  the  price  of  lamb  is  not  noticed  in  this  "Assize  Law:" 
no  doubt  the  cause  was,  that  it  was  then  but  little  used,  on  account 
of  its  scarcity ;  or  rather  it  would  seem  so  to  appear,  from  the  fact 

•  October  8,  1763.  f  Literary  Magazine,  PhUadelphia,  toL  vil.,  p.  120 


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FLY   MARKET.  151 

that  a  great  nnmber  of  the  principal  inhabitants  subscribed  to  the 
following  agreement,  made  on  the  3d  of  February,  1766 :  "  We,  the 
inhabitants  of  the  City  of  New  York,  do  hereby  engage  and  promise 
that  we  will  not  buy,  or  suffer  to  be  bought  for  our  use,  any  lamb 
before  the  first  day  of  August  next ;  and  that  we  will  not  buy  any 
meaJt  from  any  butcher  that  shall  expose  any  lamb  to  sale  before 
the  day  aforesaid,  and  will  give  all  manner  of  discountenance  to 
such  butchers  for  the  future.  Given  under  our  hands  at  New  York, 
this  8d  February,  1766."    An  editorial  says: 

'^  The  resolutions  against  eating  lamb  before  the  first  day  of  Au- 
gust, or  employing  butchers  that  kill  it,  having  been  so  generally 
received  in  this  town,  must  give  great  satisfaction  to  all  well-wish- 
ers to  this  country,  as  it  will  both  save  our  money  and  employ  our 
poor,  many  of  whom  have  been  in  a  starving  condition  for  want  of 
materials  to  keep  them  at  work.  To  show  the  great  consequences 
of  these  resolves,  let  us  only  consider  that  in  this  town  there  are  at 
least  2,000  families  that  eat  lamb,  suppose  two  quarters  each  week, 
from  the  first  of  April  to  the  first  of  August,  being  seventeen 
weeks,  17,000  lambs  saved;  the  increased  value  of  their  wool  and 
skins  in  that  time,  at  the  medium  of  2s.  each,  is  £1,700,  which,  if 
manufactured,  will  be  six  times  the  value  of  the  materials,  and  pro- 
duces £10,200.  Another  consideration  in  the  eye  of  the  public  is, 
that  a  quarter  of  lamb,  at  an  average,  before  the  above  period, 
weighs  3  lbs.  per  quarter,  and  afterwards  about  8  lbs.,  though  sold 
nearly  for  the  same  money.  But  the  greatest  advantage  to  the 
public  still  remains;  for  it  cannot  be  doubted  that,  if  all  the  lambs 
were  preserved  as  above,  (which  would  cost  the  farmer  scarce  any- 
thing,) a  very  considerable  number  would  be  kept  over  winter,  to 
inerease  our  stock  in  this  most  profitable  and  useful  animal." 

In  the  month  of  February,  tiie  year  after,  (1767,)  it  was  again 
recommended,  "  as  the  season  now  approaches  for  killing  lambs,  it 
is  hoped  that  all  humane  persons  will  abstain  from  buying  a  few 
months,  to  increase  the  breed  of  sheep,  and  provide  wool  for  the 
employment  and  cloathing  for  the  industrious  poor." 

Then  appears  the  next  year,  that  "  It  is  expected  that  all  the 
members  of  the  society  will  strictly  adhere  to  their  engagements 
against  eating  lamb  before  the  first  of  May." 

The  disposition  made  of  the  unfit  or  unwholesome  meat,  when  of- 
fered for  sale  in  the  markets  at  that  period,  was  its  immediate  seizure, 
and  then  burnt,  which  now  would  be  considered  a  disagreeable  and 
unprofitable  mode  of  disposing  of  it;  however,  but  few  cases  are  on 
record^  and  no  doubt  the  reason  was  the  prompt  action  of  efficient 
officers  against  offenders,  who  not  only  lost  their  meat,  but  had  to 


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152  FLY    MARKET. 

pay  a  heavy  fine — ^part  of  Trhich  was  used  to  buy  the  wood  to  con* 
smne  it  by  fire.  I  find  but  two  cases  in  a  period  of  about  thirteexi 
years:  one  is  noticed  (March  17,  1755,)  as  follows:  "Saturday  a 
carrion  veal  and  a  Iamb  were  seized  in  the  Fly  Market,  and  burnt 
at  the  ferry  stairs,  by  order  of  Alderman  Philip  Livingston,  of  this 
city,  it  being  diseased  and  unfit  for  use."  The  other,  November  14, 
1768 :  "  Some  few  days  ago,  nine  pigs  were  seized  in  the  Fly  Market 
as  perfect  carrion,  which  on  the  Mayor's  view  were  sentenced  to  be 
burnt  publicly  on  the  Common,  (Park,)  and  the  owner  of  them  fined 
forty  shillings ;  the  sentence  was  immediately  put  in  execution,  and 
part  of  the  fine  taken  to  purchase  wood  to  burn  them  with." 

The  death  of  an  old  man,  described  in  the  N.  Y.  Gazette,  Nov. 
28, 1763,  brings  forth  an  '*  old  land-mark"  near  this  market:  "  We 
hear  from  Jamaica,  L.  I.,  that  last  week  died  there  one  John  Cock- 
fer,  who  was  bom  so  long  ago,  that  for  many  years  he  had  forgot 
his  age.  He  often  said  he  was  a  soldier  in  the  Fort  ( WiUiam)  in 
Governor  Leysner's  time,  (who  was  here  during  a  civil  war,)  and 
had  been  a  man  grown  several  years  before  he  enlisted,  and  that, 
when  a  young  man,  he  had  often  shot  squirrels,  quails,  Ac,  on  or 
near  Pot-Baker's  Hill*  in  this  city,  which  was  then  a  wilderness." 

''  Po^6aker  Hill"  at  that  time  was  not  the  Pot-Baker  Hill  before 
Chambers  Street,  known  as  Orolius' ;  but  its  location  is  described 
in  the  following  advertisement  from  the  same  paper  and  year,  dated 
February  4 :  "  Jarvis  Roebuck,  cork-cutter,  from  London,  living  at 
the  foot  of  Pot'Baker^s  HiU,  between  the  Fly  Ma/rket  and  the  New 
Dutch  Church." 

In  the  year  1770,  alongside  of  this  market-house,  a  "  skirmish" 
took  place  between  two  of  the  ** Liberty  Boys"  and  some  six  or  seven 
of  the  King's  soldiers.  One  of  the  "Sons  of  Liberty,"  Captain  Isaac 
Scars,  appears  to  have  picked  up  a  ram^s-hom,  the  only  weapon  be- 
longing to  a  male  sheep,  and  used  it  with  such  effect  as  to  have  taken 
two  prisoners,  and  put  the  rest  to  flight. 

Some  extracts  from  the  N.  T.  Journal,  March  1st,  give  some  in* 
teresting  particulars  of  some  of  these  troubles.  In  the  month  of 
January  several  attempts  had  been  made  by  the  soldiers  to  cut  down 
or  blow  up  with  powder  the  Liberty  Pole,  which  had  been  erected 
by  the  friends  to  liberty  on  the  Common,  (Park.) 

''  The  soldiers,  determined  to  execute  their  project,  availed  them* 
selves  of  the  dead  hour  of  the  night,  and  at  one  o'clock  they  cut 
down  the  Poky  sawed  and  split  it  in  pieces,  and  carried  them  to  Mr, 
Montayne's  door,  where  they  threw  diem  down  and  said — ^let  us  go 
to  our  barracks." 

*  Liberty,  between  WiUlam  and  NasMm  Streets. 


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FLY   MARKET.  153 

*'This  act  so  exasperated  the  citizens,  that  thej  concluded,  with  the 
assent  of  the  authorities,  to  pull  down  an  old  house  which  was  some* 
limes  used  as  a  barrack  by  the  soldiers,  and  also  a  fortification  or 
shelter,  to  ooTer  their  retreat  when  engaged  in  pulling  down  this  jx>Ie. 
The  soldiers  drew  their  cutlasses  and  bayonets,  and  dared  the  inhab- 
itants to  come  and  pull  it  down.  The  magistrates  and  officers,  how- 
erer,  interposed,  but  the  soldiers  were  bent  on  further  insult  to  the 
citizens;  so  they  published  a.  handbill,  reflecting  on  their  place  of 
meeting,  {which  they  called)  the  Gallows  Green,  a  vulgar  phrase  for 
a  common  place  of  execution,  for  murderers,  robbers,  traitors  and 
rioters;  to  the  latter  they  compare  the  Liberty  Boys,  who  have 
nothing  to  boast  of  but  the  flippancy  of  tongue,"  &c.  The  Journal 
ftirther  says,  that  "  Mr.  Isaac  Sears  and  Mr.  Walter  Quackenbos, 
seeing  six  or  seven  soldiers  going  towards  the  Fly  Market,  con* 
eluded  they  were  going  to  it  to  put  up  some  of  the  above  (handbills) 
papers ;  upon  the  former  coming  to  the  market,  they  made  up  to  the 
soldiers,,  and  found  them,  as  they  had  conjectured,  pasting  up  one  of 
the  papers.  Mr.  Sears  seized  the  soldier  that  was  fixing  the  paper 
by  the  collar,  and  asked  him  what  business  he  had  to  put  up  libels 
against  the  inhabitants?  and  that  he  would  carry  him  before  the 
Mayor.  Mr.  Quackenbos  took  hold  of  one  that  had  the  papers  on 
his  arms.  A  soldier  standing  to  the  right  of  Mr.  Sears  drew  his 
bayonet;  upon  which  the  latter  took  a  mm Vhorn,  and  threw  it  at 
the  former,  which  struck  him  on  the  head ;  and  then  the  soldiers, 
except  the  two  that  were  seized,  made  off,  and  alarmed  others  in  the 
barracks.  They  immediately  carried  the  two  to  the  Mayor,  and  as- 
signed him  the  reason  of  tiieir  bringing  them  before  him«  The 
Mayor  sent  for  Alderman  Desbrosses,  to  consult  on  what  would  be 
proper  to  be  done  in  the  matter.  In  the  mean  time,  a  considerable 
number  of  people  collected  opposite  to  the  Mayor's.  Shortly  after 
about  twenty  soldiers,  with  cutlasses  and  bayonets,  from  the  lower 
barracks,  made  their  appearance,  coming  to  the  Mayor's  thro'  the 
main  street.  When  they  came  opposite  to  Mr.  Peter  Bemsen's,  he 
endeavored  to  dissuade  them  from  going  any  further,  (supposing 
they  were  going  to  the  Mayor's,)  represented  to  them  that  tiiey  would 
get  into  a  scrape;  but  his  advice  was  not  taken,  owing,  as  he  sup- 
poses, to  one  or  two  of  their  leaders,  who  seemed  to  be  intoxicated. 
The  people  collected  at  the  Mayor's  determined  to  let  them  pass  by 
peaceably  and  unmolested,  and  opened  for  them  to  go  thro'.  Cap- 
tain Richardson  and  some  of  the  citizens,  judging  they  intended  to 
take  the  two  soldiers  from  the  Mayor's  by  force,  went  to  his  door  to 
prevent  it  When  the  soldiers  came  opposite  to  his  house,  they 
halted;  many  of  them  drew  their  swords  and  bayonets;  some  say 


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254  ^^^  MARKET. 

they  all  drew;  bnt  all  that  were  present  agree  that  many  did,  and 
faced  about  to  the  door,  and  demanded  the  soldiers  in  custody ;  some 
of  them  attempted  to  get  into  the  house  to  rescue  them ;  Captain 
Richardson  and  others  at  the  door  prevented  them,  and  desired 
them  to  put  up  their  arms,  and  go  to  their  barracks ;  that  the  soldiers 
were  before  the  Mayor,  who  would  do  them  justice;  the  soldiers 
within  likewise  desired  them  to  go  away  to  their  barracks,  and  leave 
them  to  the  determination  of  the  Mayor.  Upon  the  soldiers'  drawing 
their  arms,  many  of  the  inhabitants  conceiving  themselves  in  danger, 
ran  to  some  sleighs  that  was  near,  and  pulled  out  some  of  the  rungs« 
The  Mayor  and  Alderman  Desbrosses  came  out,  and  ordered  the 
soldiers  to  their  barracks.  After  some  time,  they  moved  up  the  Fly* 
The  people  were  apprehensive  that  as  the  soldiers  had  drawn  their 
swords  at  the  Mayor's  house,  and  thereby  contemned  the  civil  au- 
thorities and  declared  war  against  the  inhabitants,  it  was  not  safe 
to  let  them  go  thro'  the  streets  alone,  lest  they  might  offer  violence  to 
some  of  the  citizens.  To  prevent  which,  they  followed  them  and  the 
two  magistrates  aforesaid  to  the  corner  of  Golden  Hill,  (John  Street 
and  Pearl,)  and  in  their  going,  several  of  the  citizens  reasoned  with 
them  on  the  folly  of  their  drawing  their  swords,  and  endeavored  to 
persuade  them  to  sheath  them,  assuring  them  no  mischief  was  in- 
tended  them,  but  without  success.  They  turned  up  Oolden  Hill, 
and  about  the  time  they  had  gained  the  summit,  a  considerable  num* 
ber  of  soldiers  joined  them,  which  inspired  them  to  re-insult  the 
magistrates,  and  exasperate  the  inhabitants ;  which  was  soon  mani- 
fested by  their  facing  about,  and  one  in  silk  stockings  and  neat  buck- 
skin breeches,  (who  is  suspected  to  have  been  an  officer  in  disguise,) 
giving  the  word  of  command,  *  Soldiers,  draw  your  bayonets  and  cut 
your  way  through  them,'  the  former  was  immediately  obeyed,  and 
they  called  out.  Where  are  your  Sons  of  Liberty  now?  and  fell  ^n  the 
citizens  with  great  violence,  cutting  and  slashing."  ''  One  of  them 
made  a  stroke  with  a  cutlass  at  Mr.  Francis  Field,  one  of  the  people 
called  Quakers,  standing  in  an  inoffensive  posture  in  Mr.  Field's 
door,  at  the  corner,  and  cut  him  on  the  right  cheek;  and  if  the  corner 
had  not  broke  the  stroke,  it  would  have  probably  killed  him.  This 
party  that  came  down  to  the  main  street  cut  a  tea-water  man  draw- 
ing his  cart,  and  a  fisherman's  finger ;  in  short,  they  attacked  every 
person  that  they  could  reach,  and  their  companions  on  Golden  Hill 
were  more  inhuman ;  for,  besides  cutting  a  sailor's  head  and  finger, 
they  stabbed  another  with  a  bayonet ;  two  of  them  followed  a  boy 
going  for  sugar  into  Mr.  Eisworth's  house ;  one  of  them  cut  him  on  the 
head  with  a  cutlass,  and  the  other  made  a  lunge  with  a  bayonet  at 
a  woman.    During  the  action  on  the  hill,  a  small  party  of  soldiers 


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FLT   MARKET.  155 

came  along  the  Fly  by  the  market,  and  halted  near  Mr.  Norwood's/' 
where  they  drew  their  bayonets  and  attempted  to  strike  Mr.  Jon. 
White.  After  which  many  of  the  magistrates  and  oflBcers  collected 
together  and  dispersed  the  soldiers. 

The  accommodations  for  the  country  people  at  this  market  had 
now  become  insufficient,  and  the  benches  allotted  for  their  use  were 
usually  taken  up  by  hucksters;  so,  in  order  to  accommodate  them, 
the  Board,  in  the  month  of  February,  1771,  ordered  "Four  tables 
and  a  platform  to  be  erected,  to  lay  quarters  of  meat  upon,  and  that 
no  butcher  or  huckster  shall  use  any  part  of  the  above  under  for- 
feiture of  the  provisions  exposed."  Before  the  close  of  the  year  a 
further  enlargement  was  asked  for  by  a  "  considerable  number  of 
freeholders  living  and  residing  near  the  Fly  Market,"  "  at  their  own 
expense."  They  wish  to  build  "  an  additional  marketrkouae  in  the 
middle  of  the  street,  to  b^n  opposite  the  house  formerly  posses'd 
by  Thomas  Randel,  and  to  extend  toward  the  river  as  far  as  the 
Smith's  Shop  now  posses'd  by  John  Boome."  On  the  28th  October 
this  privilege  was  granted  to  them. 

At  this  period  some  idea  of  the  prices  of  meats  may  be  formed 
from  a  letter  by  Joseph  Outen  Bogert,*  a  butcher  of  this  market, 
who  writes  to  the  "  Council,"  on  the  2d  September,  1771,  and  says, 
''  I  have  served  the  Alms-House  for  some  years  past,  and  not  doubt* 
ing  in  the  least  but  that  your  worthy  gentlemen  was  fully  satisfied 
therewith,  I  have  served  the  house  with  beef,  tallow,  mutton,  lamb, 
and  veal,  at  3d.,  at  S^d.,  at  S^d.,  and  at  4d.,  according  to  the  season 
of  the  year,  and  the  different  prices  of  cattle,  at  such  seasons  which 
upon  a  leavel  I  compute  it  about  SJd.  per  pound,  and  we  have  had 
a  fine  season  for  grass  and  hay.  I'll  undertake  to  serve  the  said 
house  at  3^d.  per  year  ensuing." 

In  the  month  of  August,  the  next  year,  the  Justices  and  Vestry- 
men invited  "co?i^rac^«"  again  to  serve  the  "  Poor-House"  for  the 
same  articles,  and  notify  **  that  no  allowance  or  abatement  whatever 
will  be  made  therein,  at  the  end  of  the  year,  should  provisions  un- 
expectedly rise  from  the  badness  of  the  season,  scarcity  of  cattle,  or 
otherwise.    Signed,  Ac,  Augustus  Courtlandt,  Ck." 

The  exact  number  of  the  inhabitants  at  that  time  (1772)  we  find  in 
the  N.  Hampshire  Gazette,  August  6th,  dated  New  York,  July  22, 
which  says,  **  An  exact  account  has  lately  been  taken  at  New  York 
of  the  inhabitants  of  that  city  and  county,  as  follows,  viz. : 

Whites,  8,720  males  under  16  years  of  age,     \ 

''       5,083  males  above  16  and  under  60,    V  9,088 

'^  280  males  of  60  and  upwards,  ) 

*  The  deftth  of  Joseph  OatenbogArt,  hatcher,  is  notloed  In  Febmaiy,  178a  Hit  MB 
Abmhftm,  ftod  alio  John  Woods,  were  appointed  his  ezeeoton 


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^e                                        FLY  MARKET. 

Whites,  3,779  females  under  16, 

} 

"       5,864  females  above  16, 

Blacks,      568  males  under  16, 

' 

"          890  males  above  16  and  under  60, 

• 

"            42  males  above  60, 

"          559  females  under  16, 

- 

"        1,085  females  above  16, 

Whole  number,      ... 

. 

9,643 
1,500 

1,644 

21,870." 

Crime  at  this  period,  such  as  robbery  or  burglary,  was  punished 
with  death,  on  both  woman  and  man.  The  N.  Y.  Gazette,  Novem- 
ber 4,  1773,  noticing  an  instance,  says,  "On  Saturday  last  ended  the 
proceedings  of  the  dupream  Court  of  Judicature  for  this  City  and 
County,  when  Elizabeth  Donohough,  for  picking  the  pocket  of  Mr. 
Abraham  Van  Gelder,*  in  the  Fly  Market,  and  Neptune^  a  negro 
man,  for  burglary,  were  sentenced  to  be  hanged  on  Friday,  the  10th 
of  December  next." 

After  the  new  market-house  was  finished,  it  began  to  attract  into 
it  many  persons  not  intended  to  occupy  it,  to  the  exclusion  of  cer- 
tain country  people,  some  of  whom  were  fishermen,  who  now  began 
to  visit  this  market.  This  caused  a  law  to  be  published,  August 
10th,  1774,  as  follows:  "Whereas  the  Mayor,  Aldermen,  and  Com- 
monalty of  the  City  of  New  York  have  lately  caused  to  be  erected 
a  market-house  at  Countesse's  Slip,  in  the  East  Ward  of  this  City, 
on  the  southeasterly  side  of  Dock  (Water)  Street,  for  the  better  ac- 
commodating of  the  country  people  who  come  to  this  city  with  pro- 
vision for  sale,  and  those  who  bring  fish  to  market  only,  notwith- 
standing which  sundry  butchers  have  of  late  occupied  the  benches  in 
the  said  market,  contrary  to  the  intention  of  the  said  Mayor,  Alder- 
men, and  Commonalty,  and  to  the  exclusion  of  the  country  people; 
to  prevent  which  for  the  future, 

"5c  it  ordained  by  the  Mayor,  Ac,  of  the  City  of  New  York,  in 
Common  Council  convened,  and  it  is  hereby  ordained  by  the  au- 
thority of  the  same,  That  if  any  person  who  now  does,  or  hereafter 
shall,  follow  or  practice  the  business  or  occupation  of  a  butcher  in 
this  city,  shall,  after  the  fifteenth  day  of  August  (1774)  instant,  ei- 
ther by  him  or  herself,  or  his  or  her  apprentice  or  servant,  or  by 
any  other  person  on  his  or  her  behalf,  presume  to  sell,  or  offer  or 
expose  to  sale,  any  butchers'  meat  whatsoever  in  the  aforesaid  mar- 
ket at  Countesse's  Slip,  or  shall  lay  any  butchers'  meat  on  any  of 
the  benches  within  the  same,  every  person  so  offensing  shall  forfeit 
for  every  such  offence  the  sum  of  twenty  shillings.    And  whereas, 

*  TUs  Mr.  Van  Oelder,  on  the  Sd  of  April,  1776,  '*  teased  at  aaction  all  the  pablio 
markets  for  one  year,  at  £276." 


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FLY   MABKET.  157 

8ome  batchers  have  made  a  practice  of  slanghtering  and  dressing 
sheep,  Unnb,  and  calves  in  the  publick  markets  in  this  city,  which 
occasions  filth,  and  is  offensiye  to  the  people  in  the  neighborhood: 

'^Be  it  therefore  further  ordained  by  the  anthority  aforesaid,  That 
if  any  batcher  or  other  person  shall,  after  the  said  fifteenth  day  of 
Augost  instant,  slaughter  or  dreas  any  sheep,  lamb,  or  calf,  in  any 
of  the  markets  of  the  said  city,  he  or  they  so  offensing  shall  forfeit 
for  every  offence  the  sum  of  ten  shUUng:  which  fines  and  forfeitores 
shall  be  recovered  before  the  Mayor  or  Recorder,  or  any  one  of  the 
Aldermen  of  the  said  city,  with  costs,  by  any  person  or  persons  who 
shall  prosecute  for  the  same." 

The  continued  exciting  circumstances  which  followed  caused  the 
"  spirit  of  freedom  and  patriotism  to  show  themselves,  and  soon 
they  marched  boldly  forward  into  the  *  War  of  the  Revolution.'  " 
The  inducements  held  out  by  the  British  oflScers  led  many  of  the 
slaves  to  desert  their  masters:  among  whom  were  several  belong- 
ing to  the  butchers  of  this  market,  one  of  whom  was  our  ''  con- 
temptuous John  Carpenter;"  and  they  advertised  them  as  ''Ron 
a  Way's,"*  in  the  month  of  March,  1776.  Carpenter  says,  "  Ran 
away  last  Tuesday,  the  5th  inst.,  from  the  subscriber,  living  at 
Brooklyn  Ferry,  a  negro  man  named  Tom,  about  23  years  of  age,  5 
feet,  8  inches  high ;  had  on,  when  he  went  away,  a  blue  jacket, 
buckskin  breeches,  blue-and-white  spotted  stockings,  a  tow  shirt, 
and  old  beaver  hat,  cut  small,  a  half-worn  pair  of  shoes,  with  odd 
buckles.  He  is  a  likely,  well-set  fellow ;  understands  butchering 
very  well ;  was  late  the  property  of  John  Beck,  of  this  the  City  of  New 
York,butcher;  speaks  Dutch  and  English  tolerably  well."  '*  20  shil- 
lings reward  if  he  is  taken  in  the  city,  and  40  shillings  if  taken 
out,"  ''and  all  reasonable  charges  paid,  by  John  Carpenter." 
Ooodheart  Seigler,  butcher,  also  notices  his  "  negro  boy  Prince  as 
having  run  away,  he  being  a  butcher  by  trade."  Another,  by  the 
name  of  Daniel  Enslee,  (Ensley,  Insley,  Inslow,  Ac.,)  advertises  his, 
and  agrees  to  give  ''twenty  shillings  reward  for  the  taking  of 
Tom,  a  negro  man,  if  this  side  of  Eingsbridge ;  if  on  the  other  side, 
forty  shillings  paid  by  me,  Daniel  Ensleb,  Butcher  in  Fly 
Market."* 

An  incident  soon  after  occurred,  which  rather  reflected  on  this  Mr. 
Enslee.  Before  the  "Patriots"  left  the  city,  provisions  had  become 
scarce,  and  it  was  quite  difficult  for  several  of  the  batchers  (among 
whom  were  John  Carpenter,  Mathew  Qleaves,  John  Pessenger,  and 
others,)  to  supply  the  Continental  troops,  hospitals,  Ac,  with  fresh 
beef.  Neat  catde  were  very  scarce,  and  what  few  were  obtained, 
•  ••CoDsUiatioma  Ghiseite.'' 


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158  ^LY   MARKET. 

it  was  hazardous  to  bring  them  to  the  city  by  the  drovers,  although 
they  were  usually  engaged  before  their  arrival. 

This  incident,  however,  is  better  explained  in  the  following  peti- 
tion, which  was  presented  to  the  *'  Provisional  Congress,"  then  the 
acting  magistrates :  "  The  humble  petition  of  John  Carpenter,  SenV, 
and  Mathew  Gleves,  victuallers,  (supply  biUcheraJ  and  Willbur 
Wood,  drover,  sheweth:  That  the  said  Willbur  Wood  has  been  em- 
ployed by  the  said  John  Carpenter  and  Mathew  Gleves,  as  a  dro- 
ver, to  purchase  cattle  for  them.  On  the  16th  of  June  instant,  set 
out  with  them  from  his  place  of  abode  in  Dutchess  County,  in  this 
province;  that  yesterday  evening,  about  four  o'clock,  after  said 
Willbur  Wood  had  delivered  the  cattle  at  Richard  Verian's,  (Vari- 
an's,)  the  Bull's  Head,  in  the  Bowery  Lane,  for  said  Carpenter  and 
Gleves,  he  went  over  to  acquaint  them  of  having  brought  such 
cattle,  and  where  he  had  left  them ;  that  on  his  return  to  New 
York,  near  the  Fly  Market  he  met  with  one  Mr.  Daniel  Inslow, 
and  two  other  persons,  who  invited  said  Willbur  Wood  to  go  with 
them  and  drink  some  beer,  which  he  did,  as  having  been  before  ac- 
quainted with  said  Inslow,  when,  in  discourse,  said  Wood  was 
asked  if  he  did  not  bring  down  cattle  for  said  Carpenter  and 
Gleves,  which  he  answered  in  the  affirmative.  They  then  replied, 
that  Carpenter  should  have  none  of  them,  for  if  he  had,  said  Wood 
would  meet  with  trouble,  and  directed  him  to  come  to  said  Bergen's, 
this  day,  at  two  o'clock  in  the  afternoon,  and  he  should  be  paid  for 
them  by  the  said  Inslow.  That  said  Carpenter  and  Gleves  have 
frequently  supplied  the  Continental  troops  with  provisions,  and 
said  Carpenter  at  this  time  supplied  two  of  the  hospitals ;  and  if 
these  cattle  are  wanted  for  the  troops,  they  are  willing  they  should 
part  with  the  cattle  for  that  purpose ;  but  if  that  is  not  so,  your 
petitioners  most  humbly  pray  that  this  Honorable  Board  will  be 
pleased  to  take  the  premises  into  consideration,  and  make  such  or- 
der as  shall  appear  necessary  for  the  said  cattle  to  be  restored  to 
your  petitioners,  John  Carpenter,  Sen,,  and  Mathew  Gleves,  who 
wait  on  this  Honorable  Board  with  this  their  humble  petition,  to 
give  such  further  account  and  satisfaction  in  the  premises  as  this 
Honorable  Board  may  require.  John  Carpenter, 

"  Willbur  Wood,        Mathew  Glbavbs. 

•'  New  York,  Friday  Morning,  June  21,  1776." 

Daniel  Inslow  was  called  before  the  "Congress/'  and  also  the 
petitioners,  who  were  respectively  heard ;  after  which,  the  "  Con- 
gress" "Thereupon  Besdved  and  Ordered^  That  Daniel  Inslow  do 
immediately  redeliver  to  Willbur  Wood  the  cattle  which  he  took 
from  him,  and  that  he  see  them  safely  driven  to  the  yard  from 


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FLT   MARKET.  159 

which  they  were  driven."  "He  was  also  reprimanded  from  the 
*  Chair'  for  his  improvident  conduct,  and  discharged,"* 

John  Pessenger  also  supplied  one  portion  of  the  Continental 
troops  4kt  that  period,  while  occupying  stand  No.  1  in  this  market. 
He  being  a  somewhat  remarkable,  as  well  as  a  patriotic  character, 
perhaps  a  few  incidents  connected  with  his  varied  life  may  be  found 
interesting. 

About  the  year  1740  his  parents  resided  in  a  German  settlement 
called  Stone^Arabia,  some  fifty  miles  from  Albany,  in  the  State  of 
New  York.  At  that  early  period  many  of  the  Indians  were  very 
troublesome,  especially  those  living  among  the  French  in  Canada, 
who  occasionally  made  war  excursions  among  the  settlers  in  the 
northern  part  of  the  State,  when  they  murdered  the  people,  burnt 
their  dwellings,  and  destroyed  their  crops.  In  one  of  these  excur- 
sions, the  residence  of  the  parents  of  Pessenger  was  attacked  and 
burnt,  when  they  fled  for  their  lives  towards  Albany,  but  on  their 
way  were  obliged  to  stop  among  some  friendly  Indians,  and  then, 
in  a  wigwam,  John  Pessenger  was  born,  in  the  year  1742. 

Some  protection  was  afterwards  afforded  them  by  the  Govern- 
ment, when  they  and  many  others  returned ;  only,  however,  for  a 
few  years,  as  the  continued  diflBculties  with  the  French  and  their 
Indian  allies  led  to  a  declaration  of  war.  Then  again  commenced 
the  destruction  of  human  life,  of  property,  and  the  carrying  off  cap- 
tives by  the  savages,  both  French  and  Indians.  The  thriving  vil- 
lage of  Saratoga  and  some  thirty  families  were  sacrificed  by  them ; 
and  at  this  time  the  brother  of  Pessenger,  named  Sbffrekes,  was 
carried  into  captivity,  and  kept  among  the  Indians  ten  years,  before 
he  was  able  to  return  to  his  parents,  who  had  long  given  him  up  as 
one  of  the  murdered  victims. 

Pessenger  afterwards  came  to  the  City  of  New  York,  and  served 
an  apprenticeship  with  Andreas  Regler,  when  he  commenced  busi- 
ness in  this  market,  where  we  find  him  before  the  Revolution.  Pre- 
vious to  that,  he  had  married  a  young  widow,  with  an  only  daughter, 
named  Dorothy,  who,  after  the  Revolution,  became  the  wife  of  Henry 
Astor ;  and  she  proved  a  valuable  assistant  to  him,  being  not  only  a 
fine-looking  woman,  but  very  active,  hard-working,  and  withal  quite 
frugal.  Mrs.  Astor  was  childless,  which  no  doubt  left  her  but  few 
household  duties  to  perform ;  and  as  it  was  then  quite  fashionable, 
as  well  as  it  was  considered  a  respectable  duty  of  the  '*  working 
ladies"  of  that  day  to  assist  their  husbands  in  the  prosecution  of 
their  business,  she,  at  an  early  period  of  her  married  life,  occasion- 
ally took  part  with  her  husband  in  the  slaughter-house,  in  assisting 
*  Prooeedl&ga  of  the  Proridonal  CoQgroBi. 


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1^  FLY  MARKET. 

to  prepare  tbe  mnaU  rntai^  for  the  market.  Their  oombined  in* 
diistry  and  frugality  soon  placed  it  in  their  power  to  enjoj  a  resi- 
dence in  the  Bowery,  and  the  owners  of  considerable  property. 
The  great  and  oontinaed  attachment  which  Astor  had  for  his  help- 
mate was  ofttimes  displayed  in  his  bringing  her  home  the  gayest 
dresses,  or  other  fancy  articles,  which  he  thought  woold  please  her. 
As  there  was  nothing  too  good  for  his  wife,  in  (act,  he  often  (in  his 
crooked  English)  expressed  himself  to  his  associates,  that  his 
''  Dolly  was  de  pink  of  de  Powery."  Bnt  I  am  straying  from  her 
step-father,  John  Pessenger,  who,  among  other  children,  had  two 
sons  by  this  wife,  named  Andrew  and  John,  and  both  became 
butchers. 

Andrew,  in  1797,  obtained  a  stand  in  this  market,  formerly  occa- 
pied  by  George  Arnold,  and  in  1810  changed  it  to  No.  5 ;  but  on 
the  breaking  out  of  the  war  of  1812,  he  entered  into  the  naval 
service,  on  board  of  the  U.  S.  sloopof-war  Wasp;  and  he  was  in  the 
engagement  between  that  vessel  and  H.  B.  M.  sloop^if-war  Beindeer^ 
on  the  28th  of  Jone,  1814.  In  the  list  of  ''severely  wounded"  in 
that  action  was  the  name  of  Andrew  Passinger,  who  soon  after 
died  of  these  wounds. 

The  other  son,  John,  Jr.,  in  the  year  1796  purchased,  at  public 
auction,  stand  No.  62  in  this  market,  where  he  continued  business 
until  the  year  1812,  when  he  exchanged  with  Adam  Hartell  for  No. 
85  Bear  Market ;  and  when  the  new  Washington  Market  building  was 
finished,  he  was  transferred  into  that.  Previous  to  the  war  of  1812, 
he  had  served  his  military  term  out  in  an  artillery  company,  under 
Captain  John  Menus  ;•  but  the  war  demanded  from  him  further  du- 
ties, and  he  became  drafted  in  a  militia  company,  when  he  per- 
formed three  months'  duty,  for  which  his  widow  received  160  acres 
of  land,  he  having  deceased  in  the  year  1818. 

The  patriotism  of  the  father  of  John  Pessenger,  Sr.,  early  led 
him  into  the  ranks  of  the  ''  Liberty  Boys/'  and  no  doubt,  when  the 
Continental  troops  were  assembled  in  the  city,  he  was  sought  after 
to  supply  a  portion  of  them  with  provisions;  and  being  well  known 
to  most  of  the  farmers  and  graziers  in  Westchester  County  and 
Long  Island,  he  was  enabled  to  keep  them  well  supplied ;  which 
fact  brought  him  to  the  notice  of  General  Washington,  who  found 
in  him  a  trustworthy  and  confidential  man.  On  the  retreat  of  the 
Continental  Army  to  Harlaem  Heists,  Pessenger  went  with  them ; 
and  he  became  installed  with  additional  duties,  in  the  purdiasing  of 
cattle  and  other  live  stock,  for  which  he  was  liberally  supplied  by 
the  Commissary  with  the  Continental  paper  money,  which  at  that 
period  was  at  par. 


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FLT   MARKET.  161 

The  morning  on  which  the  "Battle  of  Harlaem  Plains''  took  place, 
Pessenger  being  at  work,  slaughtering  in  a  barn  near  by,  the  bat- 
tle had  commenced,  when  Washington  sent  word  to  him  to  order 
all  hands  out,  to  assist  with  the  wounded,  and  to  his  personal  care 
he  assigned  Major  Leitch,  of  Virginia,  whom  he  said  was  a  particu- 
lar friend ;  and  on  leaving  him  he  impressively  said,  "  Pessenger,  I 
commit  him  to  your  charge,  and  do  not  leave  him  until  I  see  you 
again,  unless  I  am  killed."  Pessenger  had  the  wounded  Major  con- 
Teyed  to  a  farm-house,  where  he  remained  with  him,  doing  all,  and 
more  than  all,  that  was  ordered  by  the  surgeon.  The  next  day 
Washington  visited  his  sinking  friend,  and  found,  from  the  nature 
of  his  wounds,  that  he  could  not  live ;  although,  no  doubt,  from  the 
careful  nursing  and  attention,  he  lived  some  fourteen  days  after- 
wards, when  he  expired.  Pessenger  said  that  Washington  was  very 
much  affected,  after  every  visit,  and  more  especially  when  he  died. 

Pessenger  continued  with  the  army  to  White  Plains,  where  he 
occasionally  had  in  possession  sometimes  50  to  75  head  of  cattle  at 
one  time,  which  were  usually  inclosed  in  a  barn-yard.  One  night 
the  cattle  broke  out  and  strayed  off  towards  the  British  lines,  when 
all  hands  were  ordered  out  to  hunt  them  up,  and  it  was  near  day- 
light before  they  all  reached  home.  Pessenger  had  also  strayed 
quite  near  the  British  lines;  '* hoping,"  as  he  afterwards  said,  ''of 
bringing  in  a  tory  or  two,"  and  while  wending  his  way  back,  in 
passing  a  piece  of  woods,  he  heard  the  sound  of  a  voice  or  voices. 
It  being  yet  quite  dark  in  the  woods,  he  crept  along  behind  the  trees 
and  bushes,  when  he  got  near  enough  to  hear,  as  he  thought,  some- 
body in  distress;  the  indistinctness,  however,  led  him  nearer,  when 
he  discovered  it  to  be  Washington,  who  had  early  gone  out  to  visit 
the  lines  and  reconnoitre  the  enemy's  position,  as  he  expected  an  at- 
tack that  morning,  and  on  returning  he  had  stopped  in  this  quiet 
place,  where,  on  bended  knees,  Pessenger  found  him  praying  for 
his  country  and  the  success  of  his  patriotic  countrymen.  Pes- 
senger quietly  withdrew  and  returned  to  his  quarters,  to  find  all  the 
missing  cattle  closely  yarded.  Sure  enough  that  morning  the  ''Bat- 
tle of  White  Plains "v  began,  and  again  his  services  were  demanded, 
and  again  he  assisted  with  the  wounded. 

The  acquaintance  in  this  county  was  no  doubt  the  cause  of  Pessen- 
ger's  remaining  here  during  the  war.  In  the  mean  time  Gen.  Howe, 
in  New  York,  had  been  very  anxious  to  procure  several  persons, 
who  were  acquainted  with  the  country  round  about  the  City  of  New 
York,  to  procure  him  the  necessary  supplies,  and  having  heard 
through  Manoid^  a  tailor  in  New  York,  (who  happened  to  be  Pes- 
senger's  brother-in-law,)  his  relationship  with  Pessenger,  when  he 
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1^2  f^Y    MARKET. 

induced  him  to  go  and  visit  Pessenger,  and  with  large  rewards  to 
engage  him  if  possible.  Manold  found  Pessenger,  and  offered  him 
500  guineas  as  a  bonus,  and  a  large  salary  besides,  to  engage  in  the 
service  of  Howe.  Pessenger's  patriotic  blood  was  up  in  a  moment^ 
and  he  quickly  told  his  brother-in-law,  that  "  General  Howe  could 
not  buy  him  with  all  his  golden  guineas,  and  he  might  take  them 
back  and  tell  Howe  to — "  do  something  else  with  them. 

Previous  to  the  war  he  had  purchased  at  private  sale  of  Colonel 
De  Lancey  the  corner  lot  and  an  old  farm-house  which  stood  upon 
it,  then  known  as  the  comer  of  Bowery  Lane  and  Fisher  Street, 
(the  present  corner  of  Bowery  and  Bayard  Street,)  where  he  had 
taken  up  his  residence,  but  which  of  course  he  had  to  vacate  when 
the  British  took  possession  of  the  city. 

When  peace  was  proclaimed,  he  returned  and  took  possession  of 
his  old  habitation,  as  well  as  his  stand  No.  1,  from  which  he  had 
been  deprived  of  for  seven  long  years,  and  again  he  commenced  his 
old  business. 

It  was  not  long  before  he  found  the  property  of  De  Lancey  was 
confiscated,  and  his  own  along  with  it ;  when  he  applied  to  Gen.  Wash- 
ington for  his  opinion  and  advice  in  relation  to  it ;  the  General  in- 
formed him  that  he  thought  the  receipt  given  by  De  Lancey  when 
he  purchased  this  property  was  sufiBcient  to  entitle  him  to  hold  it; 
but  it  appears  not  to  have  been  satisfactory  to  the  Commissioners  of 
Forfeiture,  and  it  was  sold  at  public  auction,  and  again  purchased 
by  Pessenger,  who  then  thought,  that  as  the  country  was  so  much 
embarrassed  in  her  financial  affairs,  that  he  would  say  no  more  about 
it  to  Washington.  Another  loss,  or  rather  an  aflSiction,  soon  after 
took  place,  in  the  death  of  his  beloved  wife. 

Washington  became  President  of  the  United  States  in  1789,  and 
shortly  after  removed  his  residence  to  Franklin  Square,  then  known 
as  No.  1  Cherry  Street,  in  this  city,  and  where  he  sought  Pessenger 
to  furnish  his  table  with  meats,  which  in  the  course  of  time  led  Pes- 
senger to  occasionally  visit  Mr.  Tobias  Lear,  the  secretary  of  Wash- 
ington, at  the  latter's  residence,  where,  after  a  time,  he  became  ac- 
quainted with  one  of  Mrs.  Washington's  waiting-maids,  Miss  Maria 
M.  Henigar,  the  daughter  of  Christof  Henigar,  a  fine  rosy-cheeked 
girl,  and  somewhat  remarkable  for  beauty  and  healthfulness.  Tlie 
visits  became  quite  agreeable  to  both  parties,  and  finally  it  was  so 
interesting,  that  when  Mrs.  Washington  moved  to  Philadelphia, 
Miss  Henigar  could  not  be  induced  to  remove  with  her,  as  she  had 
made  up  her  mind  to  join  Pessenger  in  the  holy  bonds  of  matrimony ; 
and  she  is  yet  (1861)  living,  being  more  than  94  years  of  age. 

John  Pessenger  continued  his  business  on  his  old  stand  in  this 


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FLT   MARKET.  163 

market  until  he  died,  which  event  took  place  on  the  Fourth  of 
July,  1811. 

After  the  British  troops  had  taken  possession  of  the  city,  officers 
for  the  various  departments  were  soon  after  appointed  by  the  chief 
officer  in  command,  from  whom  emanated  various  proclamationfi 
and  orders  to  establish  the  necessary  rules  and  regulations  govern- 
ing the  markets,  police,  prices  to  various  articles,  to  prevent  extor- 
tion in  seasons  of  scarcity,  to  order  supplies ;  all  of  which  were 
Qsoally  promulgated  through  the  press.  Other  sources  will  also 
show  how  the  city  was  supplied  with  provisions,  their  prices  at 
various  dates,  with  other  matters  connected  with  the  workings  of 
the  government  under  Martial  Law. 

The  first  is  an  order  from  the  Oommissary-General,*  addressed  to 
**  John  Hewlet,  Esq.,  Long  Island:''  Commissary-Oeneral's  orders 
for  cattle  and  sheep,  dated  Jamaica,  October  2d,  1776:  "You  are  to 
use  your  utmost  endeavors  to  procure  and  bring  to  me  cattle  and 
sheep  for  the  use  of  the  army.  When  they  are  delivered  to  me,  a 
receipt  will  be  given  for  them,  to  be  paid  for  at  a  certain  time  and 
place.  If  you  find  any  butchers  or  other  persons  interfering  with 
you  in  this  business,  or  buying  from  the  country  people,  under  pre- 
tence of  bringing  it  in  to  me,  without  a  written  order  signed  by  me, 
you  will  seize  their  cattle  from  them  for  His  Majesty's  use,  put  a 
fair  value  on  them,  and  drive  them  in  to  me;  and  on  delivery,  such 
butchers  will  be  paid  for  them,  or  have  a  receipt.  You  will  also 
secure  and  seize  for  His  Majesty's  use  all  cattle  and  sheep  belonging 
to  Rebels^  who  have  left  their  habitations,  and  bring  them  in  to  me. 
And  you  will  employ  proper  persons  to  assist  you.  For  doing 
whereof,  this  shall  be  your  warrant.  I  expect  your  utmost  care  and 
dispatch  in  thisi  business ;  and  be  sure  to  report  to  me  what  you  do 
in  it.  JjkMEs  Christie,  Commissary  for  Cattle  and  Sheep." 

Mr.  George  Cherry  was  appointed  agent  for  supplying  or  victual- 
ing His  Majesty's  fleet  in  North  America,  and  he  was  found  on  board 
of  the  ship  "  Grand  Duke,"  at  Brownjohn's  Wharf,  near  this  market.t 
Andrew  Elliott  was  appointed  the  next  year,  on  the  4th  of  May, 
**  Superintendent-General  of  the  Police,  with  powers  to  issue  such 
orders  and  regulations,  from  time  to  time,  to  suppress  vice  and  sup- 
port the  poor — direction  of  the  night  watch — the  regulations  of  mar- 
kets and  ferries,  and  all  other  matters,  Ac. ;  he  will  be  assisted  by 
David  Matthews,  Esq.,  Mayor,  with  the  police.''^ 

The  prices  of  provisions,  soon  after  the  occupation  of  the  city  by 
the  British  troops,  became  much  enhanced.    Eddis,  in  his  letters 

•  N.  T.  Packet,  February  20,  1786.  f  GMette,  May  12, 1777. 

X  lUd.,  May  U,  177a 


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164  ^^^  KARKKT. 

written  in  1777,  gives  a  few  remarks  in  relation  to  the  supplies,  as 
follows:  "Notwithstanding  the  war,  New  York  is  plentifully  sup- 
plied from  Long  Island  with  provisions  of  all  kinds.  It  must,  how- 
ever, be  confessed  that  almost  every  article  bears  an  exorbitant 
price  when  compared  with  that  of  former  happy  times,"  From  an- 
other source,  in  the  same  year :  "  Every  article  of  provision  is  scarce 
and  dear — the  beef  which  formerly  sold  for  8  coppers  sells  for  24. 
No  fresh  butter  to  be  had ;  only  Irish  butter,  very  strong^  at  three 
shillings  per  pound."*  On  the  following  20th  of  April,  the  same  pa- 
per says:  "Beef  at  14d.  sterling  per  pound  by  the  quarter;  mutton 
and  veal  at  18d. ;  butter  at  4s.  Id.  a  scant  two*pound  roll ;  milk  7d. 
per  quart;  bread  very  dear,  and  all  sorts  of  poultry,  which  is  now 
very  scarce;  cabbages,  small,  from  7d.  to  20d.  apiece;  spinage  at 
lOd.  and  12d.  for  a  half  a  peck ;  three,  four,  and  five  eggs  for  7d.,  and 
everything  in  proportion."  Then,  following  on  the  3d  of  Novem- 
ber: "As  fresh  beef  and  pork  now  bear  a  very  generous  price  in 
this  city,  it  would  be  advisable  in  the  country  people  to  bring  down 
as  much  as  they  can  of  that  species  of  provisions,  and  not  all  at  once, 
but  at  different  periods,  and  in  return  they  can  supply  themselves 
with  the  best  beef  and  pork  in  the  world,  (ready  salted  to  their 
hands,)  for  one-third  less  than  they  sell  their  fresh  meat/ar.^^f  The 
same  paper  on  the  22d  of  December  following  says :  "  On  Wednesday 
next,  being  Christmas  Eve,  forty  poor  widows,  housekeepers,  having 
families  in  this  city,  will  receive  40  lbs.  of  fresh  beef,  and  a  half-a- 
peck  loaf  each,  on  a  certificate  of  their  necessity,  signed  by  two 
neighbors  of  repute,  which  is  to  be  determined  at  the  Rev.  Dr« 
Inglis's  house  in  the  Broadway,  between  10  and  12  o'clock  that  day, 
who  will  give  a  ticket  for  the  above  donation."  This  was  the  gift 
of  an  advertising  member  of  the  law,  named  John  Coggil  Enapp. 

The  same  paper  also  notices  the  seizure  from  a  set  of  monopo- 
lizing hucksters,  who  "  for  some  time  past,  undiscovered,  made  a 
practice  to  purchase  up  great  quantities  of  potatoes,  turnips,  Ac^ 
brought  to  this  market  for  the  use  of  the  inhabitants  of  this  city, 
stow  them  in  cellars  near  the  dock,  and  afterwards  introduce  them 
into  the  market,  and  dispose  them  at  a  very  exorbitant  price.  This 
being  made  known  to  our  Mayor,  he  ordered  a  large  quantity  of 
different  vegetables  that  had  been  stored  in  order  to  be  sold  as  men- 
tioned above,  to  be  seized  last  Friday,  and  the  same  were  sent  to 
the  public  Aims-House  for  the  use  of  the  poor." 

The  N.  Y.  Journal,  August  10, 1778,  speaks  of  ''a  gentleman  who 
left  Flushing,  on  Long  Island,  last  Lord's  Day,  represents  that  there 
are  about  12,000  of  the  enemy's  troops  stationed  at  New  York,  Long 

*  American  Remembranoer,  Feb.  Sd.  ^KY,  Gazette  aad  Weekly  Meroarj. 


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FLT  MARKET.  ^     165 

Uand,  Staten  Island,  and  King's  Bridge,  and  about  5,000  at  Rhode 
Island.  That  bread  is  very  scarce  with  them ;  pease  and  oat-meal 
being  served  out  instead  thereof;  the  Commissary's  rations  are  en- 
tirely stopped,  and  the  soldiers'  wives,  who  were  entitled  to  half  a 
ration,  are  reduced  to  a  quarter.  That  the  Long  Island  people  are 
selling  off  their  small  cattle,  poultry,  Ac,  as  they  are  daily  robbed 
of  them  by  the  soldiery." 

Prom  the  (N.  Y.)  "Gazette,"  November  14, 1778,  which  had  pre- 
viously become  both  royal  and  loyal,  we  learn  the  condition  of  the 
workingmen,  and  its  editor's  somewhat  generous  treatment  towards 
his  workmen,  as  will  appear  from  their  appeal,  headed  "The  journey- 
men printers  to  the  master  printers:  Gentlemen — As  the  necessaries 
of  life  are  raised  to  such  an  enormous  price,  it  cannot  be  expected 
that  we  should  continue  to  work  at  the  wages  now  given,  and  there- 
fore request  an  addition  of  three  dollars  per  week  to  our  present 
small  pittance.  It  may  be  objected  that  this  requisition  is  founded 
upon  the  result  of  a  combination  to  distress  the  master  printers,  at 
this  time,  on  account  of  the  scarcity  of  hands ;  but  this  is  far  from 
being  the  case,  it  being  really  the  high  price  of  every  article  of  life, 
added  to  the  approaching  dreary  season.  There  is  not  one  among 
us,  we  trust,  that  would  take  an  ungenerous  advantage  of  the  times. 
We  only  wish  hardly  to  exist,  which  it  is  impossible  to  do  with  our 
present  stipend.  There  is  scarcely  a  common  laborer  but  gets  a 
dollar  per  day  and  provisions,  and  the  lowest  mechanicks  from  12 
to  18s.  per  day."  The  editor  of  this  paper  says,  "  I  do  consent  to 
the  above  requisition.  Jambs  Rivington." 

In  the  year  1777,  the  farmers  on  Long  Island  were  found  possess- 
ed of  great  quantities  of  wheat,  rye,  and  Indian  com,  as  it  was  un- 
reasonable that  those  who  stood  in  need  should  be  left  at  their 
mercy,  so  the  price  of  wheat  was  fixed  at  129.  per  bushel  of  58  lbs. ; 
lye  and  com  at  7s. ;  wheat  flour,  35s.  per  cwt. ;  rye,  20s.,  and  Indian 
com  at  17s.  They  were  ordered  to  thrash  out  one-third  of  their 
crop  immediately,  one-third  by  February  next,  and  the  balance  by 
the  1st  of  May,  1778.  The  price  put  on  upland  hay  was  8s. ;  salt 
hay,  4s. ;  straw,  Ss.  per  cwt,  and  2s.  6d.  per  ton  for  carting  or  water 
carriage. 

The  prices  of  wood  were  also  regulated  in  the  same  manner.  In 
1778,  "  it  was  ordered,  that  from  and  after  Saturday,  the  5th  day  of 
December  next,  no  more  them  Jive  ponnds  currency  shall  be  demand- 
ed or  paid  for  a  cord  of  walnut  wood,  and  four  pounds  for  any  other 
sort  of  wood.  The  above  raJtea  being  deemed  from  the  best  in- 
formation amply  suflSdent,  the  owners  of  veMda  and  the  boatmen 
that  have  usually  supplied  this  city  with  wood,  are  hereby  warned 


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166  FLY   MARKET. 

not  to  attempt  to  distress  the  inhabitants  by  desisting  from  bring- 
ing the  same,  as  their  vessels  and  boats  shall,  upon  proof  thereof,  be 
seized  and  assigned  to  others  that  will  undertake  to  supply  the  city, 
and  all  protections  and  passes  shall  be  withdrawn  from  such  delin- 
quents. Those  persons  that  have  cut  tvood  for  the  use  of  this  city 
in  consequence  of  the  permits  granted,  are  to  send  it  to  New  York 
as  soon  as  possible ;  upon  proof  of  unnecessary  delay,  the  wood  shall 
be  forfeited  for  the  benefit  of  the  poor,  and  their  permits  withdrawn/** 
Then  follows  "A  proclamation  of  His  Excellency  Sir  Henry  Clin- 
ton, dated  New  York,  December  20, 1778 :,  the  farmers  of  Long  Island 
and  Staten  Island  were  ordered  to  thrash  and  bring  to  market^  by 
stated  periods,  such  proportions  of  wheat,  rye,  and  Indian  corn  in 
their  possession  as  they  did  not  stand  in  need  of  for  the  support  of 
their  families  and  the  sowing  their  lands.  They  were  required  also 
to  give  an  account  to  the  Colonels  of  Militia  of  their  respective  dis- 
tricts what  quantity  of  grain  they  possessed,  and  what  it  might  be 
necessary  to  reserve  for  the  above  uses.  The  Commander-in-Chief 
has  been  pleased  to  order  that  proclamation  to  remain  in  force,  and 
be  strictly  observed,  the  rates  excepted,  which,  as  an  encouragement 
for  an  ample  supply  of  the  markets,  are  to  be  as  follows : 

26  shillings  currency  per  bushel* 

"  "        per  cwt. 

"  "        per  bushel. 

"        per  cwt. 

"  "        per  bushel. 

"  "        per  cwt. 

per  bushel, 
per  cwt. 

"  It  is  therefore  ordered,  that  from  and  after  the  first  day  of  Feb- 
ruary next,  no  greater  price  for  any  of  the  above  articles  shall  be 
demanded,  offered,  or  received,  on  the  penalty  of  the  person  so  of- 
fending forfeiting  (on  being  convicted  on  oath  before  the  police  of 
New  York,  or  the  Colonels  of  the  Militia  of  the  district  on  Long 
Island  or  Staten  Island,  where  the  oflfence  is  committed,)  the  grain, 
flour,  corn,  or  meal  so  offered  to  be  sold  or  purchased,  or  the 
value  thereof,  and  to  suffer  imprisonment  till  the  said  forfeiture 
is  paid ;  the  one-half  of  the  forfeiture  to  be  paid  to  the  informer, 
and  the  other  half  for  the  use  of  the  poor  of  this  city,  or  the  town- 
ship where  the  offence  is  committed. 

"  The  police  of  New  York  and  the  Colonels  of  Militia  on  Long 
Island  and  Staten  Island  are  hereby  required  to  take  an  account  of 
what  quantities  of  wheat,  rye,  Indian  corn,  grain,  flour,  or  meal  are 

*  Royal  Gkizette,  Januaiy  22, 1779. 


"  Wheat, 

26 

Wheat  flour,    • 

80 

Rye,    -       -       - 

10 

Rye  meal, 

80 

Indian  corn, 

10 

Indian  meal,    • 

28 

Buckwheat, 

7 

Buckwheat  meal,     • 

26 

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FLY   MARKET.  167 

in  their  respective  districts,  and  in  whose  possession,  and  report  the 
same  as  soon  as  possible  to  the  Commandant  of  New  York. 

"  D.  Jones,  Major- General.^^ 

"  In  the  month  of  March,  1779,"  says  Johnson,  "  flour  and  bread- 
stuff were  nearly  exhausted  in  the  British  store-houses  at  New 
York.  There  was  no  good  flour ;  and  the  Hessians,  who  were  in 
Brooklyn,  drew  damaged  oatmeal  instead  of  bread.  This  meal, 
baked  into  cakes,  was  unfit  for  use ;  and  the  writer  has  seen  them 
cast  to  the  swine,  which  would  not  eat  them.  The  soldiers  were 
mutinous.  AH  the  grain  possessed  by  the  farmers  was  estimated, 
and  placed  under  requisition.  The  timely  arrival  of  a  few  victu- 
aling ships  relieved  the  scarcity,  and  saved  the  British  from  a  sur- 
render to  the  Americans  to  escape  starvation."*  The  price  of 
flour,  on  the  15th  of  December,  1780,  is  shown  from  a  petition  of 
the  bakers  of  the  city,  who  state,  "  That  the  price  of  flour — being 
advanced  beyond  the  assize  of  bread — that  they  cannot  afford  to 
carry  on  their  business."  The  Board  of  the  Chamber  no  doubt  as- 
sisted the  bakers,  as  they  *'  are  of  opinion  that  good  flour  cannot 
now  be  purchased  under  three  pounds  per  hundred  weight." t  How- 
ever, the  timely  arrival  of  vessels  from  the  mother-country  greatly 
assisted  the  citizens  with  supplies,  and  at  this  period  is  found  no- 
ticed in  the  press  the  arrival  of  beef  from  the  "  Leaden  Hall  Mar- 
ket." "  Uriah  Hendricks  has  for  sale  '  the  best  London  beef,  fresh 
put  up  in  Leaden  Hall  Market,'  preserved  by  a  new  method,  with 
saltpetre,  spice,  Ac,  and  is  in  excellent  order  for  family  use,  being 
in  casks,  of  112  lbs.  each ;  its  cost  at  London  was  more  than  double 
price  of  Irish  beef."!  The  Royal  Gazette  following,  October  13, 
notices  •'  'London  Beef' — A  few  barrels  of  the  prime  London  beef, 
put  up  at  the  Leaden  Hall  Market,  for  private  family  use,  and  im- 
ported in  the  ship  Botoman,  yet  remains  on  hand,  and  may  be  had 
by  applying  immediately  to  Captain  Taylor,  on  board  of  said  ves- 
sel, now  lying  at  Marston's  Wharf." 

Vegetables  and  fruit  also  appeared  very  scarce,  at  times;  there 
was  but  little  raised,  and  that  little  almost  clandestinely  grew  in 
some  place  beyond  the  reach  of  the  numerous  marauding  troops,  or 
immediately  under  the  protection  of  the  commanding  ofBcers.  The 
consequence  was,  but  a  small  supply  ever  came  to  the  markets,  for 
as  soon  as  it  was  landed,  it  was  immediately  taken  up  at  almost  any 
price  by  the  wealthy,  or  the  most  favored  tavern-keepers. 

"An  oflScer  lately  returned  from  New  York  reports  that  vegeta- 
bles and  fruit  are  so  excessively  scarce  there,  that' an  ordinary  din- 

*  Navftl  Magmslne,  vot.  {..  p.  568.        f  ProoeedingB  of  the  Chuibeff  of  Commeroe. 
t  K  T.  OMMtte,  a» ,  Jane  21, 1779. 


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168  FLY   MARKET. 

ner  at  any  of  the  taverns  in  the  citj,  the  garden  staff  and  dessert 
generally  exceed  the  charge  of  eyery  article  of  the  entertainment 
besides,  wine  and  firing  (fire-wood)  only  excepted."* 

A  few  months  before,  the  inventor  and  patentee  of  the  preserved 
meats  was  brought  to  light,  in  the  following  notice:  ** Portable 
soup — ^veal,  mutton,  and  beef— fresh  imported  from  Ur.  Piper,  the 
patentee,  successor  to  Debois,  the  first  inventor  of  these  excellent 
cakes  for  invalids  and  persons  traveling  by  land  and  water,  proving 
the  most  excellent  succedaneum  in  the  world.  Enquire  of  the 
printer."  t 

The  same  paper  notices  the  loss  of  ten  fat  cattle,  which,  by  de- 
scription, would  be  considered  now-a-days  a  hard  lot:  '*  Stolen  or 
strayed,  the  6th  inst.,  from  the  farm  of  John  Houls,  living  at  Qow- 
anus,  four  miles  from  Brooklyn  Ferry,  ten  fat  oaitU:  two  oxen,  one 
large  black  cow,  one  black  two  year  old  bull,  two  one  year  old  stears, 
one  three  year  old  steer,  three  two  year  old  heifers.  Twenty  dol- 
lars reward  will  be  given  to  any  person  that  secures  them,  so  that 
the  owner  may  have  them  again ;  either  acquaint  John  Houls  or 
William  Mooney,  butchers  in  the  Fly  Market.^^X 

The  winter  of  1779  and  '80  was  a  most  remarkable  cold  winter, 
for  the  long  continuance  of  cold  weather  not  only  closed  both  the 
North  and  East  Rivers,  but  also  closed  the  Bay  of  New  York  with 
solid  ice.  Near  every  article  of  provisions  and  wood  was  brought 
across  in  sleighs,  and  ''  a  troop  of  horse  and  artillery  crossed  to 
Staten  Island  on  this  immense  bridge,  which  connected  all  onr 
islands  one  with  the  other,  and  with  the  main-Iand."§  "  Fuel  and 
provisions  were  scarcely  to  be  purchased  by  the  citizens,  even  those 
who  had  means  of  paying  exorbitant  prices.  In  many  instances 
household  furniture  was  broken  up  to  supply  the  fire  necessary  to 
support  life." 

Perhaps  the  following  will  more  fully  demonstrate  the  above 
facts,  which  we  find  in  the  "  Penn^  Packet,"  as  follows:  "  Poughkeep- 
sie,  January  10.  The  very  remarkable  and  long-continued  severity 
of  the  weather  (the  like  not  havirig  been  knovm,  as  we  are  informed, 
ly  the  oldest  man  living)  has  stopped  all  the  avenues  of  intelligence, 
and  almost  cut  off  all  social  intercourse  between  people  of  the  same 
neighborhood. 

''  The  incessant  intenseness  of  the  cold,  the  great  depth  and  quan- 
tity  of  the  snow,  followed  in  quick  succession  one  on  the  back  of 
another,  attended  with  violent  tempests  of  wind,  which  for  several 
days  made  the  roads  utterly  impassable,  has  put  a  stop  to  business 

*  UpcoU'8  CoUeotioDS,  vol.  tI.,  p.  143.  f  N.  Y.  Gazette,  Aagust  19, 1780. 

t  Ibid.,  November  20, 1779.  §  Dunlap's  Hiit.  N.  T.,  p.  166. 


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FLY   MARKBT.  169 

of  all  kinds  except  such  as  each  family  conld  do  within  itself.  And 
as  many  were  slender  proyided  with  necessaries  for  subsistence,  we 
have  reason  to  apprehend  that  we  shall  shortly  hear  many  melan- 
choly accounts  of  private  distress  in  the  country ;  and  that  from  the 
sea-coasts  and  vessels  at  sea,  the  accounts  will  be  dreadful."*  ''  The 
sound  between  Long  Island  and  Connecticut  is  almost  froze  over 
in  the  undest  part,  and  some  persons  have  passed  over  from  Long 
Island  to  Norwalk  and  other  parts  of  Connecticut  on  the  ice.  Wood 
is  brought  from  Long  Island  to  New  York  on  sleighs.  It  is  also 
passable  from  Paulus  Hook  to  New  York."t  A  party  of  mounted 
refugees  who  had  been  making  surpriBois,  among  which,  an  ac- 
count says:  '^The  further  trophies  of  this  successful  excursion  are 
three  handsome  sleighs,  with  ten  good  horses,  all  of  which  were 
yesterday  (Feb.  1)  driven  to  New  York  over  the  ice  from  Staten 
Island,  an  enterprise  never  yet  attempted  since  the  first  settlement  of 
this  country J^X  "  Yesterday,  (Feb.  6,)  86  loaded  sleighs  went  from 
this  city  to  Staten  Island  on  the  ioe."§ 

''A  few  nights  since  a  number  of  prisoners  escaped  from  one  of 
the  prison  ships  in  New  York  on  the  ice,  one  of  whom  froze  to  death 
before  he  reached  the  shore.^1  (No  doubt  he  was  almost  dead  from 
starvation  and  disease  before  he  started.)  At  a  later  date  another 
escape  from  this  prison  ship  is  thus  noticed :  "  Last  Sunday,  {2Qth 
August,  1780,)  came  to  town  (Phila.)  Captain  Richard  Grinnell, 
who  made  his  escape  from  the  Scorpion  prison  ship  in  New  York, 
on  Tuesday,  the  15th  inst.  He  informs  us  that  on  the  day  he  left 
New  York,  there  was  the  hottest  press  ever  known  there ;  they 
pressed  about  700  men  that  day,  and  the  press  still  continued ;  that 
they  not  only  took  seamen,  but  all  the  refugees,  laborers,  and  mer- 
chants' clerks  they  came  a^sross.  Captain  Grinnell  further  says, 
that  there  was  on  board  the  two  prison  ships.  Scorpion  and  Strom- 
billo,  about  300  prisoners.''1[ 

In  the  year  1782,  the  cold  weather  must  have  been  more  severe 
than  that  two  years  before,  but  not  so  long  continued.  The  news  from 
New  York,  dated  January  31,  states:  "We  have  had  a  more  intense 
frost  since  Monday  last,  than  any  inhabitant  of  this  city  remembers 
to  have  happened  for  twenty  years  past.  It  has  rendered  the  ar- 
rival of  vessels,  and,  consequently,  the  means  of  obtaining  intelli- 
gence, impracticable."^^  Then  appears  on  the  4th  of  February,  "In 
tfie  late  severe  weather  on  Tuesday  and  Wednesday  last,  some  peo- 
ple were  found  frozen  to  death  in  their  crafts  in  the  Bast  and  Hud- 

•  1780.  Janaary  27.  f  ThX^-,  Feb.  S.  %  Ibtd.,  Felk  11 

§  GtiM's  Mercury,  Ao.,  FeK  7.        ||  New  Hampehire  Gaiette,  Febmaiy  6. 
Y  Peoaa.  Packet,  Angnat  22.  ••  Peuna.  Packet,  Feb.  12, 1782. 


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170  FL7  MARKET. 

son's  Rivers ;  and,  indeed,  the  bay  was  so  full  of  ice  all  the  last  week 
that  our  navigation  to  Staten  Island  has  been  greatly  impeded." 

The  manner  in  which  the  authorities  at  this  period  disposed  of  the 
stands  in  the  several  markets  is  thus  noticed:  "By  permission  of 
the  Commandant,  the  stalls  and  standings  of  the  several  markets  in 
this  city  will  be  exposed  to  sale  at  public  auction  on  Monday,  the 
13th  of  March  next,  at  12  o'clock,  at  the  house  of  Mr.  John  Roome, 
inn-keeper,  the  corner  of  Water  Street  and  the  Fly  Market.  Condi* 
tions  will  be  made  known  at  the  time  of  sale.  In  Vestry,  2l8t  Feb- 
ruary, 1780.* 

The  formation  and  peculiar  duties  of  this  Vestry  are  more  fully 
shown  in  Butler's  letter,  who  says,  "At  this  time,  December,  1777,  the 
poor  were  greatly  distressed,  and  General  Robertson,  then  Command- 
ant of  New  York,  was  pleased  to  appoint  nineteen  gentlemen  from 
the  different  wards  of  the  city,  to  solicit  contributions  for  their  relief. 
These  gentlemen,  with  the  magistrates  of  police,  were  then  formed 
into  a  Vestry,  and  the  Aims-House  and  poor  of  the  city  were  com* 
mitted  to  their  care ;  and  latterly,  the  pumps,  lamps,  &c. — proper 
funds  for  the  execution  of  the  trust  repos^  in  them  were  necessary — 
therefore  the  rents  of  such  houses  and  stores  as  were  not  wanted  for 
the  service  of  government,  and  the  five  {six,  viz,,  Goenties  Slip,  (Hd 
Slip,  Fly,  Peck  Slip,  Bear,  and  Oswego)  markets  were  appropriated 
to  the  funds  for  the  Vestry. ^^\ 

The  street  which  ran  alongside  of  this  {Fly)  market  was  not 
known  at  this  period  as  Maiden  Lane,  but  as  "  Fly  Market,'^  and 
occasionally  as  "  Ply  Market  Street,"  from  the  corner  of  Queen 
{Peart)  Street,  where  the  numbers  began ;  in  fact,  we  find  but  few 
streets  properly  numbered,  until  after  the  British  troops  had  taken 
possession  of  the  city.  The  "Gazetted  furnishes  us  with  several 
evidences  of  the  above  facts.  In  1778:  "Joseph  Collins,  Taylor, 
takes  this  method  to  acquaint  the  gentlemen  of  the  navy  and  army 
that  he  has  lately  removed  to  No.  22  *Fly  Market.'"  Then  there 
appears  in  1779 :  "  Wanted,  empty  soap  and  candle  boxes.  Any  per- 
son  who  has  them  to  dispose  of  may  hear  of  a  purchaser  by  applying 
to  Gregg  and  Laffan,  Tallow  Chandlers  in  the  Fly  Market." 
1780:  "To  be  sold,  the  lease  of  a  house  in  the  'Ply  Market,'  late 
the  property  of  Mr.  Timothy  Slandert,  deceased."  1781 :  "  William 
Torrence  &  Co.  have  removed  to  No.  2  Fly  Market,  next  door  to 
William  Campbell's,  vhere  they  are  opening  for  sale  broadcloths 
and  Rattinetts,  Ac."  In  1799,  the  numbers  were  continued  through ; 
that  is,  Maiden  Lane  from  Broadway,  where  the  numbers  began,  to 
No.  112  corner  of  Pearl  Street,  was  then  known  by  this  name,  and 

*  Royal  Gazette.  f  The  Tomtiiuon  Pi^fiera,  MercantUe  Library  AssociaUoo. 


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FLY  MABKBT.  171 

from  112  to  the  East  River  was  called  the  "  Fly  Market,^'  although 
the  numbers  continued  on  to  the  end  of  the  market. 

Fly  Market  Street  continued  in  existence  until  the  26th  of  April, 
1824,  when  Assistant  Alderman  Samuel  St.  John  called  up  his 
*' resolution"  for  giving  the  name  of  Maiden  Lane  to  the  whole  street 
running  from  the  North  to  the  East  River,  "  now  known  as  Cort* 
landt  Street,  Maiden  Lane,  and  Fly  Market  Street,"  which  was 
adopted ;  but  Gortlandt  Street  still  survives. 

We  turn  to  the  26th  of  April,  1780,  and  find  the  following :  ''Notice 
is  hereby  given  that  no  persons  whatsoever  are  to  be  admitted  into 
the  British  lines  without  having  previously  obtained  passports  for 
the  purpose,  from  the  Commandant  of  New  York,  except  those  who 
come  to  and  go  from  the  markets.  They  will  report  themselves  to 
the  police,  whose  permissions  for  taking  out  horses,  Ac,  will  be  suf- 
ficient. Oliver  Dblancet,  Adjt.  General."* 

Some  three  years  after,  on  the  1st  of  January,  (1783,)  ''Notice  is 
hereby  given  to  any  person  or  persons  inclined  to  enter  into  a  con- 
tract for  supplying /re^A  beef  to  His  Majesty's  ships  at  this  port,  to 
send  in  their  proposals  to  me,  in  writing,  sealed,  on  or  before  the 
18th  of  January  next,  on  board  the  'Centurion'  Victualler,  at  Hal- 
let's  Wharf,  or  at  No-  217  Water  Street. 

"  John  Delafons,  Agent  Victualler*" 

Followed  soon  after  this:  "By  order  of  the  Commandant,  per- 
mission is  hereby  granted  to  all  persons  coming  from  any  part  of  the 
country  with  live  stock  for  the  use  of  the  markets,  to  kill  and  dis- 
pose of  the  same,  provided  the  stock  is  slaughtered  at  such  places 
as  are  set  apart  for  that  purpose.  Hucksters,  or  any  other  persons 
who  may  be  detected  in  forestalling  any  provisions  or  vegetables 
brought  to  this  city  for  the  supply  of  the  markets,  may  depend  on 
being  treated  with  the  utmost  rigour.       John  St.  Claib,  Sec'y. 

"New  York,  7th  June,  1783." 

The  last  "  proclamation,"  made  before  the  "  evacuation,"  in  relar 
tion  to  markets,  is  noticed  in  the  N.  Y.  Weekly  Mercury,  July  7th, 
same  year,  as  follows:  "Whereas,  the  butchers  who  have  stalls  and 
standings  in  the  public  markets,  make  common  practice  of  throwing 
the  feet  and  other  offals  of  their  meat,  either  under  their  stalls,  or 
in  the  streets  adjoining  the  same,  whereby  the  inhabitants  living 
near  the  said  markets  are  greatly  incommoded  and  distressed  by  the 
nuisance  occasioned  by  such  practices.  The  said  butchers  are  tiiere- 
fore  hereby  strictly  forbidden  from  committing  such  practices  in  fu- 
ture, and  are  hereby  directed  to  keep  their  several  stalls  and  stand- 
ings clean  and  clear  of  all  such  fil^;  and  in  case  any  of  the  said 

*  Rojal  Guette. 


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172  FLY  MARKET. 

butchers  shall  be  convicted  before  the  police  of  transgressing  this 
order,  their  license  shall  be  forfeited,  and  the  offenders  be  delivered 
from  having  anj  stall  or  standing  in  the  said  markets.  By  order 
of  the  Commandant.  John  St.  Clair,  Secretary." 

We  turn  back,  and  find  from  an  examination  of  David  Hunt,  of 
Westchester,  (New  York,)  noticed  in  the  New  Hampshire  Gazette, 
December  24, 1776,  in  which  he  states,  "That  provisions  in  general 
were  scarce  and  dear,  flour  in  particular,  and  all  kinds  of  vegeta- 
bles." "  That  they  (Bangers)  had  collected  {in  Westchester  County, 
New  York,)  1,200  sheep,  900  hogs,  and  several  hundred  cattle,  and 
drove  them  on  Willet's  Neck,  and  since  gone  off  to  New  York." 

These  "  Rangers"  were  organized  in  New  York,  principally  from 
the  refugees,  as  a  foraging  party,  under  the  command  of  the  city's 
former  Governor,  (Tryon,)  who  made  himself  quite  extensively 
known  as  a  '^  Cattle  Thief,"  and  was  one  of  the  most  efficient  in  sup- 
plying the  city  with  fresh  provisions.  The  following  will  give  the 
reader  some  idea  of  his  accomplishment  in  that  line.  The  "same 
paper,"  1778,  September  8,  gives  the  news  from  "  New  Haven,  August 
26,"  which  states  that  "  Governor  Tryon,  with  his  foraging  party, 
it  is  said,  are  returning,  having  collected  on  Long  Island  upwards 
of  9,000  cattle,  sheep,  &o"  The  same,  March  9th,  (1779,)  next  year, 
says,  ''The  troops  which  lately  went  to  the  east  end  of  Long  Island, 
we  are  informed,  were  foraging  parties;  they  have  since  returned 
towards  New  York,  taking  with  them  a  considerable  booty  in  cattle 
of  various  kinds."  March  I6th:  ''  8,000  men  landed  at  Elizabeth 
Town,  under  General  Clinton.  A  large  body  of  them,  under  Gen* 
eralJones,  immediately  marched  a  few  miles  in  the  country,  and  had 
collected  about  40  head  of  cattle,  when  a  detachment  of  Conti- 
nental troops  attacked  them,  retook  the  cattle,  and  drove  the  enemy 
to  their  boats."  The  same  paper  notices  a  ''  large  body  of  the  enemy, 
commanded  by  Governor  Tryon,  advanced  by  the  way  of  King's 
Bridge  as  far  as  Horseneck.  About  two  hundred  head  of  cattle  and 
a  number  of  sheep  fell  into  their  hands."  May  18th:  '*  Last  Saturday 
a  party  of  the  enemy  landed  at  Point  Judith,  and  stole  from  there 
about  900  sheep,  and  between  60  and  70  cattle."  June  Sth:  ''  Last 
week  about  1,500  of  the  enemy  made  an  excursion  to  Scrallcnberg, 
a  small  village  in  the  neighborhood  of  Hackinsack,  where  they  burnt 
some  houses,  abused  the  inhabitants,  and  plundered  their  effects; 
but  by  the  timely  exertions  of  the  army,  who  collected  speedily, 
they  were  obliged  to  embark  with  precipitation,  carrying  but  few 
cattle  and  little  of  their  plunder  with  them.  We  learn  that  this 
party  consisted  chiefly  of  the  Associated  B^ugees,  as  they  term  them- 
selves,  but  more  properly  Associated  Thieves  and  Murderers.    They 


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FLY   MARKET.  173 

stabbed  an  old  gentleman  of  about  90  years  of  age,  named  Talman, 
in  order  to  oblige  him  to  confess  where  his  money  was.  He  died 
shortly  after  of  his  wounds.  They  also  killed  Mr.  Zabriskie,  by 
frequently  stabbing  him  with  their  bayonets,  and  a  negro  girl,  as  she 
was  driving  off  some  cattle."  Jtdy  \Zth:  "A  party  of  Tories  from 
New  York  landed  at  Monmouth,  and  marched  with  upwards  of  50 
men  to  Trenton  Falls,  undiscovered,  where  they  surprised  several 
persons,  and  drove  off  a  few  sheep  and  horned  cattle."  Also, 
"Thirty-two  Refugees,  commanded  by  Captain  Bonnel,  landed  at 
Greenwich,  in  Connecticut;  they  plundered  the  houses  of  nothing 
bat  arms  and  ammunition,  the  principal  object  being  horned  cattle, 
of  which  they  brought  off  thirty-eight,  also  four  horses.  The  Ref- 
ugees proceeded  about  six  miles  into  the  country,  collecting  cattle ; 
and  on  their  return,  were  attacked  by  a  body  of  liebds,  supposed  to 
consist  of  about  150,  with  two  field-pieces,  but  got  safe  on  board, 
and  arrived  at  Oyster  Bay  about  noon  with  the  cattle  and  prisoners." 

The  American  soldiers  were  not  behind,  and  would  occasionally 
return  the  compliment,  even  going  so  far  within  the  opponents'  lines 
as  to  reseize  this  kind  of  stolen  property.  Says  the  Penn*  Packet, 
July  81, 1781,  *'  Last  Saturday  Colonel  Sheldon's  Dragoons  went  to 
Frog's  Neck  and  Morrisania,  and  brought  off  upwards  of  200  horned 
cattle,  a  considerable  number  of  horses,  hogs,  sheep,  Ac,  said  to  be 
Colonel  De  Lancy's  property,  which  he  had  plundered  from  the  in- 
habitants, in  order  to  fatten  and  sell  to  the  New  York  butchers ;  a 
jHTofitable  trade  he  has  practiced  a  long  time." 

Again,  we  return  to  the  "  Royal  Gazette,"  dated  January  2, 1779, 
where  we  find  the  loyal  editor  indulging  his  readers  with  a  species 
of  burlesque  on  General  Washington's  proclamation  in  relation  to 
cattle.  The  editor  states,  ''  Mr.  Washington  last  winter  issued  a 
proclamation,  requiring  the  inhabitants  of  certain  districts  to  fatten 
their  cattle,  in  order  to  subsist  his  army  the  ensuing  campaign. 
The  British  light  infantry,  having  at  least  an  equal  interest  in  that 
measure,  one  of  them,  in  the  name  of  the  whole,  composed  the  fol* 
lowing  exhortation  to  accompany  and  strengthen  the  Rebel  Gen- 
eral's requisition : 

*'  Great  WuhiDgton,  thoa  migbty  son  of  Mvs, 
Thoa  tboDd'riDg  hero  of  the  JMei  wan  I 
Accept  our  thanks  for  all  thy  favors  past } 
Oar  special  tbaoks  await  thee  for  the  last 
Thy  proclamation,  timely  to  command 
The  Catiit  to  he  fattened  round  the  land, 
Bespeaks  thy  generosity,  and  shows 
A  charity  that  reaches  to  thy  foes  I 
And  was  this  Order  issned  for  oar  sakes, 
To  treat  us  with  Mpatt  Betf^nA  savory  steaks? 


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174  FLT   MARKET. 

Or  WM  it  for  thy  JUhel  train  {otendedt 
Give  'em  the  Hides— and  let  their  Bhoes  be  mended ; 
Tho'  Bhoee  are  what  they  seldom  wear  of  late ; 
T would  load  their  nimble  feet  with  too  mach  weight! 
And  for  the  Beef— there  needs  no  puifis  abont  it ; 
In  short,  they  most  content  themselves  without  it ; 
Not  that  we  mean  to  have  them  starv'd— why  many! 
The  live  utock  in  abundance,  which  they  carry 
Upon  their  baeka,  prevents  all  fear  of  that 
Then,  honest  Whige,  make  all  your  cattle  fal ; 
We,  to  reward  you  Ibr  your  care  and  pains, 
Will  visit  soon  your  crowded  stalls  and  plains ; 
And  for  your  pampered  CatHe  write,  at  large, 
With  bloody  bayonets,  a  full  discharge. 
You  know  that  we  light  bobs  are  tough  and  hardy, 
And  at  a  push  youll  never  finds  ns  tardy ; 
We  have  a  stomach  both  for  Beef  and  battle ; 
So,  honest  Whigs,  once  more,  feed  well  your  Cattle  ; 
Obey  your  Chief  ^9  command ;  and  then,  'tis  plain. 
We  cannot  want  for  Beef  the  next  campaign  I 
And  if  we  want  for  fighting,  be  it  known, 
.  The  fault,  good  neighbors,  shall  be  all  your  own!  McL k/' 

It  also  sajs,  on  the  following  5th  of  June,  '^  On  Monday  last  a 
party  of  about  forty  Refugees  embarked  on  board  two  sloops  and 
proceeded  to  Sandy  Hook.  On  Tuesday  evening  they  landed  at 
Shoal  Harbor,  and  went  to  the  houses  of  some  notoriously  violent 
Rebels,  whom  they  took  and  brought  off  with  their  cattle,  &c.,  with- 
out the  loss  of  a  man."  "  The  party  returned  safe  here  on  Wednes- 
day, bringing  with  them  27  milch  cows,  7  horses,  2  waggons  loaded 
with  goods,  Ac." 

The  manner  of  disposing  of  their  cattle  and  other  plunder  was 
by  auction,  which  usually  took  place  at  the  "  Bull's  Head  in  the 
Bowery,"  then  the  grand  depot  for  stolen  goods.  The  same  paper 
which  notices  the  above,  also  notices  the  sale  of  their  plunder,  as 
follows :  ''  To  be  sold  this  day,  at  public  auction,  at  the  Bull's  Head 
Tavern,  in  the  Bowery  Lane,  between  XI  and  XII  o'clock,  several 
good  milch  cows,  one  very  fine  ox,  several  horses,  waggons,  Ac," 
Then,  on  the  17th  inst.,  were  "  to  be  sold,  at  the  Bull's  Head  Tavern, 
twenty-one  elegant  horses,  which  have  been  in  the  Rebel  Dragoon 
service;  also,  near  thirty  head  0/ horned  cattle^  saddles  and  bridles, 
some  sheep,  three  waggons,  Ac."  One  more  sale  we  shall  notice, 
July  10th  following,  at  the  same  place :  "  For  ready  cash  only,  a 
number  of  horses  and  cows,  &c.    By  Feegan  and  Deane." 

"  N.  B.  As  a  bell  is  not  allowed,  the  Hibernia  Flag  will  be  hoist- 
ed and  a  crytr  at  the  door." 

The  "  same  paper,"  on  the  following  29th  of  November,  notices 
the  "police  regulations"  of  bread.    "That  on  and  after  Thursday, 


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FLY    MARKET.  175 

the  23d  instant,  all  bread  made  of  sweet  flour  of  the  first  quality 
most  be  baked  into  long  loaves  of  two  pounds  weight  each,  and 
stamped  with  the  initials  of  the  baker's  name,  and  sold  for  sixteen 
coppers  each  loaf;  and  all  bread  made  of  merchaatable  flour  of  an 
inferior  quality  must  be  baked  into  round  loaves,  weighing  two 
pounds  and  one^half  each,  stamped  and  sold  same  as  the  preceding/' 

The  prices  of  every  article  continued  high,  and  the  "  dry  summer 
of  1782  they  were  very  high.  Beef  then  ranged  from  Is.  6d.  to  Ss. 
6d.  per  lb. ;  turkeys,  half  a  guinea  apiece ;  potatoes  sometimes  sold  at 
18d.  and  a  half  a  guinea  per  bushel ;  butter,  8  and  10s.  per  lb.,  and  the 
price  of  oysters'was  at  the  enormous  rate  of  16s.  the  100."  The  poor 
suffered  much,  especially  the  "  Refugee  poor,"  but  were  occasionally 
assisted  from  the  proceeds  of  a  theatre,  gotten  up  by  the  British 
officers,  many  of  whom  were  amateur  performers ;  and  also  from  a  lo^ 
tery,  called  in  the  royal  paper  of  May  4th,  1782,  the  "  New  York 
Poor  Lottery,  which  positively  commences  drawing  on  Wednesday 
next,  the  8th  instant,  at  Kirk's  Tavern,  near  the  new  Bridewell,  under 
the  inspection  of  Captain  Linus  King,  Frederick  Bhinelander  and 
Robert  Dale,  who  are  appointed  by  authority  for  that  purpose." 

But  where  were  some  of  these  "Old  New  Yorkers,"  when  the 
poor  starving  Rebels  (as  they  were  called)  lay  locked  up  in  the  many 
loathsome  prisons  and  prison-ships,  where  so  many  thousands  were 
suffering  the  martyrdom  of  freedom  for  seven  long  years?  I  ask, 
where  were  the  many  who  afterwards  grasped  at  the  only  chance  to 
stay  among  those  brave  and  successful  patriots,  that  they  might,  with 
their  ill*gotten  wealth,  take  advantage  of  the  poverty  of  those  suf- 
fering patriots,  and  accumulate  not  only  riches,  but  give  to  their 
generations  a  title,  or  at  least  the  appearance  of  nobility,  and  that 
royal  Hood  which  will  never  leave  their  veins  until  they  shall  wipe 
that  eternal  stain  from  their  records?  Read  in  the  N.  H.  Gazette, 
April  26, 1777,  where  "  The  enemy  at  New  York  continues  to  treat 
the  American  prisoners  with  great  barbarity.  Their  allowance  to 
each  man  for  3  days  is  1  lb.  of  beef,  3  worm-eaten,  musty  biscuits, 
and  a  quart  of  salt  water.  The  meat  they  are  obliged  to  eat  raw, 
as  they  have  not  the  smallest  allowance  of  fuel.  Owing  to  this  more 
than  savage  cruelty,  the  prisoners  die  fast,  and  in  the  small  space 
of  three  weeks  (during  the  winter)  no  less  than  1,700  brave  men  per- 
ished." In  the  History  of  Litchfield  we  find,  from  Lt.  Catlin's  ac- 
count, that  they  were  ''confined  with  no  sustenance  for  48  hours; 
for  11  days  had  only  2  days'  allowance,  pork  offensive  to  the  smell, 
bread  hard,  mouldy  and  wormy,  made  of  canail  and  dregs  of  flax-seed. 
lie,  with  225  men,  were  put  on  board  the  Glasgow  at  New  York  about 
Dec.  25,  to  be  carried  to  Connecticut  for  exchange.  They  were  on 
board  11  days,  crowded  between  decks,  and  28  died  through  ill- 


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176  FLY   MARKET. 

usage."  Then  we  find  from  the  "  grievances  that  the  prisoners  are 
under/'  ^'  close  confined  in  jail,  without  distinction  of  rank  or  char* 
acter,  amongst  felons,  without  their  friends  being  suffered  to  speak 
to  them,  even  through  the  grates.  On  the  scanty  allowance  of  2  lbs. 
hard  biscuit,  and  2  lbs.  raw  pork  per  man  per  week,  without  fuel  to 
dress  it.  Frequently  supplied  with  water  from  a  pump  where  all 
kinds  of  filth  is  thrown  that  can  render  it  obnoxious  and  unwhole- 
some, when  good  water  is  as  easily  obtained.  Denied  the  benefit 
of  a  hospital,  not  allowed  to  send  for  medicine,  nor  even  a  doctor 
permitted  to  visit  them  when  in  the  greatest  distress;  married  men 
and  others,  who  lay  at  the  point  of  death,  refused  to  have  their  wives 
or  relations  admitted  to  see  them,  and  for  attempting  it  often  beat  from 
the  prison."*  From  the  Life  of  Silas  Talbot,  there  were  "  Two  young 
men,  brothers,  belonging  to  a  rifle  corps,  were  made  prisoners,  and 
sent  on  board  the  '  Jersey.^  The  elder  took  the  fever,  and  in  a  few 
days  became  delirious.  One  night  (his  end  was  fast  approaching) 
he  became  calm  and  sensible,  and  lamenting  his  hard  fate,  and  the  ab- 
sence of  his  mother,  begged  for  a  little  water.  His  brother  with  tears 
entreated  the  guard  to  give  him  some,  but  in  vain.  The  sick  youth 
was  soon  in  his  last  struggles,  when  his  brother  offered  the  guard  a 
guinea  for  an  inch  of  candle,  only  that  he  might  see  him  die.  Even 
this  was  refused.  '  Now,'  said  he,  drying  up  his  tears,  '  if  it  please 
God  that  I  ever  regain  my  liberty,  I'll  be  a  most  bitter  enemy r 
He  regained  his  liberty,  rejoined  the  army,  and  when  the  war  ended, 
he  had  8  large  and  127  small  notches  on  his  rifle-stock." 

"  But  sacb  a  traiD  of  endless  woes  abound, 
So  many  mischiefs  in  these  Hulks  are  found, 
That  on  them  all  a  poem  to  prolong 
Would  swell  too  high  the  horrors  of  our  aong^ 
Hunger  and  thirst,  to  work  our  woe,  combine^ 
And  mouldy  bread,  and  flesh  of  rotten  swine ; 
The  mangled  carcase,  and  the  batter'd  brain, 
The  Doctor's  poison,  and  the  Gaptain'sf  cane, 
The  Soldier's  mosqnet.  and  the  Steward's  debt, 
The  evening  shackle,  and  the  noon-day  threat'' 

«<See,  Captain,  see!  what  rotten  bones  we  pick— 
"  What  kills  the  healthy  cannot  cure  the  sick ; 
'*  Not  dogs  on  such  by  ChrUtian  men  are  fed, 
'*  And  see,  good  master,  see  what  lousy  bread  1" 

"  Tour  meat  or  bread  (this  man  of  death  replied) 
«*  'Tie  not  my  care  to  manage  or  provide— 
<«  But  this,  base  Rebel  doge,  I'd  have  you  know, 
"That  better  than  you  merit  we  bestow." 

"  Here,  generoue  Britain,  generous,  as  yon  say, 
*'  To  my  parch'd  tongue  one  cooling  drop  convey ; 
"HeU  has  no  mischief  like  a  thirsty  throat, 
*'  Nor  one  tormentor  like  your  David  SproatJ^t 

•  Oiiderdonk,  L.  L,  p.  226.  f  Ganningham.  %  Freneau'a  Poeon,  p.  169. 


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FLT  MABKBT.  177 

The  term  Bd)dj  which  had  been  so  many  years  applied  to  the 
Friends  of  Liberty  by  the  royal  editors,  Riyington  and  Oaine,  had 
at  last  become  not  only  disagreeable,  bnt  uncalled  for,  and  appears  to 
have  been  the  cause  of  the  following  threat:  *'  Provoked  at  the  in- 
solence of  the  insignificant  Tory  Printers  in  New  York,  who  have 
the  impadence  to  use  the  term  Bbbel  in  their  papers,  in  contradic- 
tion to  the  declaration  of  their  King,  in  his  late  speech  to  the  con- 
trary, a  number  of  determined  Whios  have  agreed,  that  should  that 
term,  or  any  other  reproachful  word,  be  further  used  after  the  first 
of  March  next,  in  any  of  their  papers,  that  printer,  or  printers,  shall 
have  their  ears  cropt  if  found  in  any  of  the  thirteen  United  States 
of  America  after  the  war.  This  public  intimation  is  given  them  to 
prevent  their  further  abuse  of  words,  and  to  save  their  ears,  should 
any  of  them  presume  to  tarry  in  that  country,  and  amongst  those 
people  who  have  been  the  objects  of  their  repeated  scurrility  and 
abuse,"* 

The  evacuation  of  the  City  of  New  York  by  the  British  troops 
appears  to  have  been  ordered  by  the  authorities  in  England  to  take 
place. some  five  months  previous  to  the  25th  of  November,  1783,  if 
the  following  extract  of  a  letter  is  true.  This  letter  is  dated  New 
York,  July  21,  1783,  and  reads:  "This  instant  the  Mercury  packet 
is  arrived,  and  Admiral  Digby  has  sent  me  an  assurance  that  the 
definite  treaty  is  in  his  possession,  and  shall  be  sent  to  me  presently. 
The  day  appointed  in  England  for  the  evacuation  of  New  York  was 
this  very  21st  of  July."t  This  no  doubt  was  true,  as  Sir  Guy  Carle- 
ton  in  the  following  month  ''  informed  Congress  that  he  has  received 
orders  from  England  for  the  immediate  evacuation  of  New  York ; 
but  observes  in  his  letter,  that  this  movement  will  be  considerably 
retarded  by  the  number  of  persons  who  mnst  go  with  him  in  conse^ 
quence  of  the  resolutions  of  the  people  throughout  the  United  States, 
forbidding  the  return  of  the  Befagees."t  In  the  month  of  April 
previous,  large  numbers  of  Refugees  began  to  leave;  the  press  says, 
"  The  number  of  inhabitants  going  to  Nova  Scotia  in  the  present 
fleet  consists  of  upwards  of  nine  thousand  souls. "§  In  the  month 
of  June  following,  the  A^utant-Oeneral,  Oliver  De  Lancey,  informs 
''All  persons  who  have  returned  their  names  to  the  Adjutant-General 
for  passage  from  this  place  are  desired  to  apply  to  the  gentleman 
appointed  by  His  Excellency,  the  Commander-in-Chief,  to  examine 
their  several  claims,  who  will  attend  for  that  purpose  at  the  City 
Hall,  from  11  o'clock  until  two  every  day,  Sundays  excepted."  On 
the  16th  of  August  following:  "  Notice  is  hereby  given  to  all  loyal- 

•  Penim.  Packet,  March  4, 1783.  t  IMd.,  Jnly  24,  178S. 

I  Ibid^  AogoBt  23»  1788.  (  N.  Y.  Qaceite,  Ac,  April  28, 1783. 

Vol.  L— 12 


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178  FLY   MARKET, 

ists  within  the  Knee,  desfrons  to  emigrate  from  this  place  before  the 
Jinal  evacuation,  that  they  must  give  in  their  names,  at  the  Adjatant* 
General's  ofiSce,  on  or  before  the  2l8t  instant,  and  be  ready  to  em* 
bark  by  the  end  of  this  month."  September  the  12th  following, 
the  Commissioners  "  give  notice  to  all  loyalists  who  have  been  rec^ 
ommended  for  passages  to  Nova  Scotia,  that  ships  are  prepared  to 
receive  them  on  board,  and  it  is  expected  they  will  embark  on  or 
before  the  twentieth  instant;  that  if  they  neglect  to  embrace  the 
opportunity  now  offered,  they  must  not  expect  to  be  conveyed  after* 
wards  at  the  public  expense."  The  two  latter  were  signed  "  Abyah 
Williard." 

"  The  most  authentic  accounts  agree  {saya  a  correaponderU)  that 
there  are  yet  between  12  and  15,000  Refugees,  men,  women,  and 
children,  to  be  embarked  at  New  York,  Long  Island,  and  Staten 
Island  for  Nova  Scotia,  St.  Johns,  and  Abasco ;  among  these  are 
many  passengers  of  fortune  and  landed  estates,  who  leave  nothing 
but  terra  firma  behind  them."*  In  the  following  month  of  October, 
Rivington  says :  "  Such  persons  discharged  from  the  several  depart- 
ments of  the  armjt,  and  have  already  agreed  to  form  a  joint  settle- 
ment at  Port  Mattoon  in  Nova  Scotia,  and  are  desirous  of  proceed- 
ing thither  immediately,  are  requested  to  give  in,  without  loss  of 
time,  a  return  of  themselves  and  families  to  the  heads  of  their  re- 
spective departments,  in  order  that  a  proper  vessel  may  be  obtained 
for  the  purpose  of  conveying  them  and  their  baggage.  They  will 
hold  themselves  in  readiness  to  embark  in  eight  days  from  the  date 
hereof.  Refugees  and  discharged  soldiers,  who  have  been  admitted 
to  join  this  settlement,  are  required  to  give  in  their  names,  if  de- 
sirous of  going  at  present,  to  Mr.  Hugh,  next  door  to  the  Bull's 
Head  in  the  Bowery.    By  order  of  the  Managers." 

The  time  was  drawing  near  when  the  last  of  the  Refugees  and 
other  British  subjects  and  soldiers  were  about  departing  our  shores. 
One  Tory  "officer-holder,"  however,  in  his  eagerness  to  steal  and 
destroy  public  property,  has  left  his  name  behind,  to  be  again  brought 
to  light  in  the  following  transaction :  "  Last  Friday  evening,  (four 
dayahfore  the  evacuation  J  Mr.  Ephraim  Smith,  heretofore  Inspector 
of  Markets,  assisted  by  a  party  of  soldiers,  determined  that  the 
Damned  Rebels,  as  that  worthy  character  is  pleased  to  term  them, 
should  not  enjoy  so  small  a  convenience  when  the  insolence  of  his 
office  should  be  no  more,  cut  down  and  carried  to  his  house  the  Bell 
OF  THE  Fly  Market,  with  threats  of  prostrating  the  whole  of  the 
erections  there.  But  it  is  with  great  pleasure  we  inform  the  public 
that  the  Commandant,  having  been  made  acquainted  with  the  trana- 

*  Penna.  Packet,  September  4,  1783. 


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PLY  MARKET.  I79 

action  by  a  gentleman  who  happened  accidentally  to  be  present,  he 
not  only  severely  reprimanded  Mr.  Smith  for  his  conduct,  bnt  Mr« 
Smith,  by  his  order,  will  have  the  mortification  of  replacing  the  beU 
in  its  old  situation.    (Le  moReurss,  I^hraim"*) 

All  the  market-houses  which  were  left  standing  were  found  in  a 
minons  condition,  having  had  no  additions  or  repairs  during  the 
occupancy  of  the  city  by  the  British  troops.  "Above  £100  were 
spent  on  these  market-houses  alone."t 

The  prices  of  provisions,  just  previous  to  the  evacuation,  are  thus 
noticed  in  Rivington's  paper,  (October  22d:)  "As  sold  yesterday  in 
the  public  markets  in  this  city.  Beef  from  6d.  to  15d.  per  lb. ;  mut- 
ton, from  7d.  to  Is.  Id.  per  lb. ;  lamb,  lOd. ;  veal  from  Is.  to  Is.  6d. 
per  lb.;  fowls  from  48.  to  4s.  6d.  per  pair;  turkeys  from  6s.,  weigh- 
ing 8  lbs. ;  potatoes,  3s.  6d.  per  bushel ;  Indian  meal,  16s.  per  cwt. ; 
and  butter,  2b.  6d.  per  lb."  Four  days  after  the  evacuation  of  the 
city,  the  prices  showed  another  decreasing  change,  in  the  same  royal 
editor's  paper;  but  that  paper  had  undergone  a  change  in  its  name, 
and  appeared  with  the  title  of  "  Btvington^a  New  York  Oazetfe  and 
Universal  Advertiser"  Its  royalty,  as  also  its  editors,  had  ceased 
with  the  departure  of  the  British  troops,  who  also  had  taken  with 
them  the  loyalty  of  a  great  many  persons,  and  left  their  royal  bodies 
behind  to  propagate  and  spread  discord  and  disunion,  if  it  had  then 
been  possible.  Many  thousands,  however,  who  were  strictly  con- 
scientious and  honestly  loyal,  left  immediately  after  finding  the  royal 
power  here  had  to  succumb. 

A  very  few  of  the  royal  butchers  remained  after  the  evacuation ; 
but  those  who  belonged  to  the  markets  previous  to  the  war,  and  re- 
mained in  the  city  through  and  after  the  war,  by  continuing  under 
various  pleas,  were  often  subjected  to  insult  and  mortification  in  be- 
ing pointed  out  as  a  tory  butcher,  with  other  more  unpleasant  names. 

For  the  first  few  months  after  the  patriots  had  regained  the  city, 
very  little  business  was  done,  as  there  was  but  little  to  do  with. 
The  city  and  the  country  round  about  were  almost  stripped  of  all 
kinds  of  provisions  to  supply  the  departing  troops  and  former  citizens. 
In  fact,  the  whole  market  fees  of  the  city,  as  appears  from  an  ac- 
count of  Alderman  Van  Gelder,  the  collector,  for  nine  days»  ("from 
December  9th  to  the  18th,  1783,")  were  but  £14  4s.  5d. 

The  poor  returning  troops  and  citizens  were  almost  naked  and 
moneyless,  but  the  pleasure  of  once  more  beholding  their  homes  and 
firesides  instilled  into  them  a  new  life;  while  there  were  among  the 
poor  farmers  some  who  were  unable  to  rise  again,  being  obliged  to 
mortgage  their  farms  to  obtain  the  necessary  stock  and  farming  im- 
•  Peima.  Ptekel,  November  25,  1783.  f  Oiij  Records, 


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180  FLT   HARKBT. 

plements  to  cultivate  the  recovered  barren  acres,  with  the  hope  that 
a  few  years  would  enable  them  to  live  as  before.  The  long  war  had 
so  exhausted  the  country,  that  it  was  many  years  in  recovering  suf- 
ficiently to  relieve  its  liberators,  and,  of  course,  many  were  impov- 
erished. In  the  year  1786  we  find  noticed,  ''As  an  instance  of  the 
deplorable  situation  of  New  Jersey  for  want  of  cash,  a  correspond- 
ent assures  us  that  he,  last  week,  counted  posted  up  over  the  mantle 
in  a  tavern  no  less  than  sixteen  real  estates  taken  by  execution,  and 
advertised  by  the  Sheriff  of  Morris  County  for  sale."* 

How  much  doiveaU  owe  these  suffering  liberators  for  our  freedom 
and  independence!  And  if  we  cannot  repay  them  in  any  other  way, 
we  can  and  mu8t  watch,  guard,  and  batik  if  necessary,  and  also  in- 
struct our  children  to  do  the  same,  that  the  Union  may  be  preserved 
as  they  have  left  it  to  us. 

This  subject  has  led  me  astray,  although  I  feel  that  the  sufferings 
in  obtaining  our  liberties  should  be  engrafted  in  our  every-day 
thoughts,  conversations,  books,  schools ;  in  fact,  in  our  very  dreams, 
so  that  we  shall  be  prepared  to  combat  the  enemy  in  any  form  he 
may  assume.  Beware,  however,  of  the  demagogue  or  the  smooth- 
tongued politician, as  this  subject  is  their  forte,  which  reaches  quickest 
the  soul  of  the  patriot,  and  warily  leads  him  on,  to  be  at  last  entrap* 
ped  into  their  fatal  clutches,  and  robbed  of  their  manhood.  Other 
pens  than  mine  have,  and  will  spread  again,  pages  of  this  history, 
which  will  have  more  influence  than  can  be  found  on  these,  and  I 
can  safely  resume  the  history  of  this  market  again. 

On  the  22d  of  April,  1784,  "  The  neighborhood  and  butchers  at 
the  Fly  Market  were  desirous  of  covering  the  slip  at  the  lower  end 
of  the  said  market,  and  extending  the  said  market  over  the  slip  to 
the  bridge  across  the  same,  to  make  room  for  the  country  people," 
which  then  again  began  to  crowd  this  market.  The  Board  gave 
their  consent  on  the  12th  of  May  following  to  extend  to  the  bridge 
near  the  ferry  stairs,  and  "  That  the  market  thus  extended  be  cov- 
ered in  the  same  manner  as  the  one  it  joins  on." 

A  countryman,  about  two  years  after,  in  this  market,  displayed  a 
remarkable  feat  or  feast,  which  is  noticed  in  the  N.  Y.  Gazette, 
29th  May,  1786:  "Yesterday,  a  countryman  in  the  Ply  Market,  for 
a  trifling  wager,  e^X  fifty  boiled  eggs,  shells  and  all  I  He  performed 
the  task  in  about  fifteen  minutes,  being  elevated  on  a  butcher's  block 
during  the  operation." 

A  feast  at  the  best  hotels  (or  rather  taverns  and  inns)  was  not 

BO  expeusive  at  that  period  as  the  present,  as  the  following  charges 

will  show :  "Breakfast,  two  shillings ;  dinner,  two  shillings  and  nine* 

pence;  supper,  two  shillings;  cut  of  beef,  one  shilling;  cut  of  ham, 

^  Independent  Joamftl,  Haroh  4. 


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FLY  MARKET.  Igl 

OBe  Bhilling  and  two-pence;  do.  of  beef-steaks,  one  shilling  and  six- 
pence ;  chicken,  one  shilling  and  nine-pence ;  oysters  from  6d.  to  2s., 
as  called  for.  Single  bed,  one  shilling;  horse,  one  night  at  hay, 
two  shillings ;  double  do.,  one  shilling  and  sixpence ;  oats  per  quart, 
tiiree-pence;  bating  at  hay,  sixpence.  Madeira,  8s.;  Champagne, 
10s.  i  claret,  8s. ;  Sherry,  6s. ;  port,  6s. ;  porter,  3s. ;  beer.  Is. ;  cyder, 
8d.  per  bottle;  sangaree,  (per  bowl,)  4s. ;  punch,  28. ;  toddy,  Is.  2d. ; 
grog.  Is. ;  spirits,  (per  gill,)  6d. ;  brandy,  8d. ;  gin,  8d.,"  Ac* 

**  Ebaracu8,'^  a  very  great  traveler,  also  gives  us  a  bill  of  fare  of 
the  several  States  the  next  year ;  he  says:  "As  I  have  travelled  thro' 
all  the  States,  I  will  furnish  the  BtU  of  Fare:  for  New  Hampshire^ 
beef  and  Indian  dumplings.  Massachusetts,  cod  and  haydock,  {had- 
dock.)  Rhode  Island,  tontog  (Uach^/ish)  with  plain  butter,  not  with 
aoy  or  ketchup — they  are  quintessences  and  extracts.  Connecticut, 
pork  and  molasses.  New  York,  oysters  and  lobsters.  (New)  Jersey, 
a  Burlington  ham  and  Newark  cyder.  PhUaddphia,  soft  sheeps- 
head.  Delaware  does  not  deserve  a  dish;  they  must  subsist  as 
Lazarus  did — upon  the  crumbs.  Maryland,  a  canvass-back  duck, 
roasted  by  a  stop-watch.  Virginia,  fried  chickens  and  hominy,  with 
New  England  rum.  North  Carolina,  corn-fed  pork  and  peach 
brandy.  South  Carolina,  a  pye  of  rice-birds  and  a  roast  turkey- 
buzzard.  These  vain  people  will  have  two  dishes  if  their  creditors 
have  none.     Georgia,  a  poor-man's  pudding  with  a  glass  of  water. "t 

There  is  no  doubt  some  truth  in  the  general  character  of  the 
living  in  the  several  States  as  noticed  above ;  but  the  reader  will 
conclude  that  the  following  description  of  the  living  in  the  States 
is  a  more  reasonable  one:  "Notwithstanding  the  general  charge  of 
itfl  being  hard  to  live  in  America,  there  is  not  at  this  time  a  civilized 
country  on  the  face  of  the  earth  in  which  a  poor  man  may  live  with 
00  much  ease  as  in  the  United  States.  Every  traveler  knows  with 
what  diligence  farmers  and  mechanics,  in  foreign  countries,  are 
obliged  to  labor  through  the  year.  In  the  winter  the  work  begins 
before  day,  and  in  summer  it  continues  thro'  the  day.  They  have 
little  respite  or  time  for  spending  money.  If  one  of  them  is  accost- 
ed, he  seldom  stops  to  answer — ^his  work  must  go  on.  This  is  not 
the  case  with  us,  nor  have  we  any  example  of  what  Europeans  call 
industry.  The  citizens  of  America  may  live  with  half  of  the  labor 
which  would  support  them  in  France,  England,  or  Germany.  Is  he 
candid  or  honest  who  complains  of  such  a  country,  or  says  that  his 
troubles  are  occasioned  by  the  necessary  difficulty  of  living,  by  the 
difficulty  of  paying  taxes,  or  of  providing  food  and  raiment,  or  by  any 
other  course  tiian  his  vices,  his  idleness  and  dissipation?"^ 

•  N.  T.  Ptoekei,  Marcli  12,  n8«.  t  DtOj  Advertiwr,  May  16, 1787. 

%  N.  T.  Packet,  Jane  26, 1787. 


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182  ^^^  MARKET. 

There  were,  however,  complaints  about  some  of  the  currency  at 
this  period,  and  more  particularly  the  copper  coin. 

The  ferrymen  who  own  the  boats  which  ply  between  this  Market 
Slip  and  Brooklyn  apply  to  the  Board  for  relief,  and  state  they 
"  have  for  this  some  time  past  taken  a  quantity  of  coppers  for  fer- 
riage, &c.,  at  the  rate  of  twenty  to  a  shilling,  which  is  now  lying 
on  their  hands,  and  must  of  course  be  a  very  great  loss  in  Uieir 
present  depreciation,  and  involve  your  petitioners  into  many  embar- 
rassments. We  therefore  beg  your  Hon.  Body  to  consider  our  situ- 
ation, and  to  receive  them  on  the  same  conditions  from  the  Ist  to 
the  20th  of  July,  (1787,)  and  your  petitioners  will  be  in  part  re- 
leased of  the  loss  in  the  '  copper  coin.'  They  also  beg  leave  that 
your  Hon.  Body  will  assist  them  with  advice  in  respect  to  those 
coppers  which  are  now  in  circulation,  as  the  public  in  general, 
which  uses  the  ferry,  very  seldom  presents  any  other  money  to  pay 
their  passage,  and  which  we  have  received  since  your  Hon.  Body 
was  pleased  to  recommend  their  passing  dX/oriy-eighi  to  a  shilling; 
but  as  there  still  arises  great  inconvenience  in  taking  them  even  at 
that  rate,  and  still  likely  to  be  attended  with  some  additional  loss, 
unless  received  for  rent  by  your  Hon.  Body,  we  pray  your  counsel 
in  the  premises,  Ac.'*  Henrt  Dawson,  Gilbert  Y.  Mater,  and 
Jacob  Wilkins,  Jun'r. 

The  bakers  also  follow  with  another  on  the  same  subject,  on  the 
8th  of  June,  who  state,  ''  That  the  greatest  part  of  the  bread  which 
the  petitioners  have  sold  for  some  time  past  has  been  paid  for  in 
'  coppers '  and  Jersey  money ;  that  they  cannot  purchase  flour  with 
the  moneys  they  have  so  received,  and  are  daily  obliged  to  receive; 
neither  will  the  merchants  receive  these  moneys  in  payment  from 
them  for  flour  they  have  already  purchased.  <  That  in  this  embar* 
rassed  situation,  they  cannot  carry  on  their  business  without  involv- 
ing themselves  in  debt." 

In  the  month  of  June  of  the  next  year,  a  petition,  signed  by 
above  forty  inhabitants,  praying  "that  the  south  part  of  the  market 
now  called  the  Fish  Market  may  be  covered,  and  appropriated 
solely  to  the  use  of  the  country  farmers;  that  the  slip  may  bellied 
up  half  of  the  width  of  Burnet  Street,  and  a  new  fish  market  erect- 
ed over  the  water  in  the  middle  of  the  slip."  A  committee  re- 
ported, on  the  26th  of  the  same  month,  in  favor  of  the  above,  and 
the  "additional  market-house  across  the  slip,  and  that  proper 
blocks  or  wings  be  laid  in  the  slip,  to  extend  sixty-four  feet  beyond 
the  south  side  of  Frqnt  Street,  for  the  purpose  of  supporting  a 
market,  which  may  be  erected  at  the  expense  of  the  neighborhood.'^ 

It  may  not  be  uninteresting  to  know  how  the  stands  were  aiv 


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I^LT   MARKET.  Ig3 

ranged  in  the  first  and  second  markets,  after  the  third  or  fish  mar- 
ket was  finished.  This  regulation  was  adopted  by  the  Board  on 
the  31st  December  following.  In  the  first  or  upper  market-house, 
beginning  at  Queen  (Pearl)  Street:  "One  stall  at  the  head  of  the 
market,  and  eighteen  on  the  sides,"  (37  stands.)  "That  every 
butcher's  stall  be  no  more  than  eight  feet  long,  and  three  feet,  six 
inches  broad,  and  that  no  part  thereof  extend  any  further  into  the 
market ;  that  the  back  of  each  stall  be  placed  to  range  with  the 
inner  side  of  the  market-posts,  and  eleven  feet  passage-way  through 
the  centre.'^  The  whole  length  is  represented  as  being  224  feet, 
and  about  20  feet  wide.  The  same  arrangement  was  made  with  the 
six  butcher  stalls  in  the  next  or  middle  market-house. 

The  rapid  growth  around,  and  the  increased  business  in  this  mai^ 
ket^  appeared  to  outstrip  all  the  others ;  and  notwithstanding  the 
"  late  enlargement,  it  is  still  insufficient  for  the  accommodation  of 
the  citizens."  The  neighboring  inhabitants  and  owners  of  prop- 
erty were  always  quite  willing  to  subscribe  certain  amounts  to  fui^ 
ther  increase  its  success;  but  we  find  some—just  such,  or  whom 
knowledge  has  made  worse,  now-a-days — exceedingly  willing  to 
subscribe,  but  exceedingly  t^nwilling  to  pay  over.  But  I  must  go 
back  to  this  less  corrupt  age,  and  speak  of  a  reported  list  of  per- 
sons on  the  17th  July,  1789,  "who  had  subscribed  (£54!)  to  the 
late  addition  to  the  Fly  Market,  and  either  neglected  or  refased  to 
pay;"  when  suits  were  ordered  to  be  commenced  against  them. 

The  law  for  collecting  the  public  market  fees  was  altered  on  the 
4th  of  March,  1790;  weekly  sums  were  to  be  collected  from  all  the 
butchers  who  occupied  stands.  In  this  market,  the  sum  of  £16  9s. 
was  the  stated  weekly  sum,  and  the  lowest  sum  for  any  stall  "  be 
four  shillings."  This  law  was,  however,  repealed  before  it  was  a 
month  old,  as  we  find,  on  the  26th  of  the  same  month,  it  changed 
to  the  old  system  of  paying:  "  For  the  four  quarters  of  beef,  2s. ; 
of  mutton,  lamb,  and  veal,  4d. ;  and  of  fresh  pork,  6d.,  in  lieu  of  all 
other  market  fees." 

Towards  the  close  of  the  year,  quite  a  compliment  was  paid  to 
the  Collectors,  by  the  "Board,"  (on  the  24th  December,)  who  state, 
"  That  from  the  diligence  of  James  Culbertson  and  Binier  Skaats, 
Collectors  of  the  market  fees,  considerable  more  moneys  have  been 
collected  than  usual.  Therefore  ordered,  that  Mr.  Culbertson  be 
allowed  £20,  and  Mr.  Skaats  £7,  in  addition  to  their  usual  allow- 
ance to  the  first  of  January  next;  and  that  from  that  day  they  be 
allowed  a  commission  of  ten  per  cent,  on  the  moneys  by  them  re- 
spectively collected."  What  a  pity  we  had  not  a  few  Culbertsons 
and  Skaatses  now-a-days  to  handle  the  public  moneys,  as  well  as  to 


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184  FI-Y    MARKET. 

fill  many  of  the  piiblic  offices  I  And  what  a  satisfaction  to  the 
public,  if  the  whole  city  were  better  goyemed,  on  Kme-MLf  (or  even 
less)  the  expense  1  Such  kind  of  men  would  build  or  rebuild  our  City 
Halls,  our  (Tompkins)  marke^houses,  clean  our  streets,  and,  in  season, 
attend  to  all  other  necessary  matters  which  might  lay  suffering,  and 
wanted  by  the  people.  Their  consciences,  as  well  as  their  oaJths^ 
would  not  allow  them  to  leave  their  desks  or  duties,  during  business 
hours,  (which  number  should  count  as  many  as  of  those  of  the  me- 
chanics and  other  workmen,)  to  while  away  the  people's  time  in 
Tom's,  or  Dick's,  or  Harry's  place,  or  traveling  the  road  with  a  tnmr 
out  of  electric  speed,  or  to  attend  a  political  convention.  We  all 
know  that  there  are  those  of  that  class  who  live  among  us,  but  of 
course  they  are  not  the  flexible  tools  that  this  mmority  of  well-or- 
ganized political  workmen  want;  their  metal  is  not  tempered  in  the 
modern  political  furnace  to  suit  their  purposes:  in  fact,  they  are 
only  suitable  for  the  mass,  who  appear  to  have  no  choice,  or,  at 
least,  who  do  not  use  it. 

One  of  these  collectors,  (James  Oulbertson,)  in  making  his  regular 
returns  in  the  month  of  April,  1792,  also  makes  a  return  of  fines 
collected  from  nearly  fifty  delinquents,  to  the  amount  of  X16  15  0* 
Seventeen  of  these  were  for  light  butter;  nine  for  foreetaUing;  eight 
for  hlotaing  meat;  two  for  Uowing  turkey  a;  the  others  for  exposing 
meat  by  an  agent,  and  goods  contrary  to  law.  Their  fines  were  gen- 
erally/ve  shiUings,  and  a  few  jCI,  which  was  immediately  paid  after 
the  decision  was  made,  or  the  Bridewell  key  was  turned  upon  them* 

In  the  month  of  May,  1790,  the  *'  inhabitants  around  this  market- 
place praying  aid  to  erect  an  arched  walk  across  the  kennel  (sewer) 
at  the  end  of  the  market  in  Queen  Street,"  and  also,  "  that  the  stall 
of  Henry  Astor,  butcher,  be  removed  to  the  lower  market,"  which 
was  granted.  This  stall  of  Astor's  stood  across  the  head  of  the  u{h 
per  market,  and  no  doubt  tended  to  block  up  the  entrance  gangway, 
which  caused  its  removal. 

An  anecdote  was  told  to  me  by  an  old  drover,  several  years  ago, 
of  this  thrifty  and  hard-working  man.  When  he  commenced  busi- 
ness here,  he  b^an  in  a  small  way ;  his  purchases  were  made  at  the 
Bull's  Head,  (which  at  that  time  took  up  the  grounds  where  now 
stands  the  old  Bowery  Theatre;)  here  he  selected  his  smaU  stock,  of 
which  he  bought  but  few  at  a  time,  placed  them  in  his  wheelbarrow, 
and  wheeled  them  home;  then,  with  the  assistance  of  his  wife,  be 
dressed  and  prepared  them  for  market.  Hours  before  daylight,  the 
next  morning,  his  stock  in  trade  was  placed  in  the  same  carriage, 
when  he  convoyed  it  to  the  Fly  Market;  and  he  became  one  of  the 
most  wealtiiy  of  our  butchers. 


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FLT   MARKET.  185 

He  came  to  this  country  during  the  Reroltition  with  the  British 
troope;  bat,  after  a  short  period,  he  managed  to  escape  their  ser^ 
vice,  and  entered  into  that  of  the  "Art  and  mystery  of  Butchering;" 
when  he  became  known  and  continued  with  the  name  of  Ashdoor. 
In  1788, 11th  of  April,  he  advertises  his  horse  as— "Stolen  from  the 
subscriber,  on  the  night  of  the  10th  instant,  firom  the  door  of  Israel 
Seaman's,  Rosevdt  Street,  a  dark-brown  horse,  about  fifteen  hands 
high,  a  small  star  in  his  forehead,  the  hair  worn  off  his  breast  by  a 
collar;  trots  and  carries  well;  saddle  and  double  curb  bridle  on 
the  horse  when  stolen."  Three  guineas  reward  for  the  horse,  sad- 
dle, and  bridle.  "For  the  thief,  horse,  saddle,  and  bridle,  ten 
guineas  will  be  paid  by  Henry  Ashdoor/' 

After  pecux  was  declared  he  sought  citizenship,  and  was  natural- 
ized under  the  act  passed  May  4th,  1784 ;  soon  after  which  he  began 
to  thrive,  and  when  his  brother  John  Jacob,  the  millionaire,  arrived 
here,  the  frugal  butcher  Henry  assisted  him  with  his  first  stock  in 
trade:  a  basket  of  trinkets ^  which  he  sold  and  traded  with  those  who 
brought  furs  and  skins  on  board  of  sloops  and  other  vessels  which 
lay  around  the  docks ;  and  these  were  the  rough  foundation-stones 
that  were  built  upon,  and  now,  no  doubt,  this  structure  of  wealth 
stands  among  the  highest. 

But  their  lives  are  only  an  edition  of  many  of  the  "  Old  Families," 
whose  posterity  are  now  enjoying  the  fruits  of  Ihe  labor  of  their 
self-denying  and  hard-working  forefathers  B,nd/oremothe^s;  who,  if 
they  oould  rise  up  from  their  graves — Rip  Van  Winkle  like — they 
would  gaze  horror  stricken  on  the  idleness,  extravagance,  and  dissi- 
pation of  their /o^  generations.  And  these/c»^  generations  should 
be  forced  to  look  back  into  the  ages  past  and  see  their  ancient  sires, 
<or  Gcvemors,  as  they  are  now  usually  termed,)  with  their  old 
greasy  leather  breeches — the  only  pair  ever  owned  by  the  wearer — the 
thick,  coarse  woolen  stockings,  with  the  heels  run  and  wdl  darned ; 
the  cowhide  boots,  with  two  patches  in  front  and  one  behind;  the 
coarse  flaxen  shirt,  which  thread  had  been  spun  on  a  spinning-wheel 
for  a  resting  speU  on  a  winter's  evening;  and  a  hat,  or  part  of  one, 
which  twenty  years  before  was  said  to  have  been  sold  for  a  "  cocked 
hat,"  and  the  second  one  ever  owned  by  the  wearer ;  and  then  again, 
their  old-fashioned  great-grand  dames,  with  linsey  woolsey  short 
gowns  and  petticoats,  the  wool  of  which  had  been  prepared  by  their 
own  useful  hands;  their  hair  without  a  comb,  but  plainly  arranged 
under  a  close-fitting  cap;  and  their  feet  incased  in  a  pair  of  shoes, 
so  heavy  and  substantial,  that  their  noise  and  healthfblness  would 
frighten  a  modem  doctor  out  of  his  senses,  as  well  as  deprive  him 
of  his  annual  income.    In  the  cZ^generations  that  have  followed 


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186  FI'^  MARKET. 

those  "  good  old  times"  which  I  have  endeavored  to  illustrate,  many 
no  doubt  will  exclaim  against  this  picture  of  their  ancestors  as  be- 
ing a  shocking  satire  upon  themselves,  with  their  thin  shoes  and 
thinner  constitutions;  and  if  they  did  not  faint  away  outright,  they 
would  say  that  history  was  a  tell-tale,  and  ought  not  to  be  counte- 
nanced in  this  enlightened  and  fast  age. 

We  follow  on  with  a  petition  dated  20th  of  July  following,  from 
several  farmers  and  gardeners,  whose  names  will  be  recognized 
among  many  of  the  worthy  families  of  the  present  generation. 
They  complain  that  they  were  not  allowed  to  place  themselves 
among  the  farmers  of  Long  Island  and  other  parts  of  the  country  in 
the  markets,  and  wish  that  proper  places  may  be  set  apart  for  the 
petitioners,  where  they  may  be  free  from  the  inconveniences  they 
have  hitherto  experienced.  Signed  by 
Henry  Brevoort,       Henry  Spingler,  Henry  Low, 

Isaac  Yarian,  Samuel  Van  Orden,      Lawrence  Ulshofer, 

Thomas  Rose,  Bichard  Amos,  Yellis  Mandeville, 

Nicholas  Romaine,    George  Campbell,         Gilbert  Goutant, 
William  Graham,     John  Samler,  Samuel  Hallett, 

David  Williamson,  John  Amos,  &c. 
Then  complaints  were  made  of  the  great  interruption  and  noise 
of  carts,  carriages,  Ac,  in  market  hours.  The  Board,  on  the  fol- 
lowing 20th  of  August,  **  Ordered  the  Deputy  Clerk,  Mr.  Culbert* 
son,  to  place  chains  across  Front  Street,  thirty  feet  west  of  the  side 
or  range  of  the  street  leading  along  to  the  river ;  and  in  December, 
1799,  chains  were  ordered  on  both  sides  across  Water  Street." 

In  the  month  of  January,  1792,  "A  terrible  fire  broke  out  in  a 
frame  house  in  Front  Street,  near  the  Fly  Market,  which  in  two 
hours  entirely  consumed  7  houses,  and  damaged  a  number  of  others 
before  it  was  extinguished.  The  Fly  Market  was  on  fire  several 
times,  and  the  shipping  at  Taylor's  and  Brownjohn's  Wharves  were 
obliged  to  haul  into  the  stream.  The  heat  was  so  great  that  several 
panes  of  the  windows  on  the  opposite  side  of  the  street  were  melted.'' 
There  was  a  scarcity  of  neat  cattle  several  years  after  peace  had 
been  declared,  but  since  1788  they  increased  very  fast.  Long  Island 
and  the  lower  counties  of  the  State  of  New  York  almost  wholly  sup- 
plied the  city's  wants.  Connecticut  exported  a  large  number  in  '89 
and  in  '90:  "  there  were  exported  (in  1790)  7,072  horses,  cattle,  and 
mules,  it  being  394  more  than  was  shipped  the  preceding  year  from 
the  district  of  New  London."*  The  "  Complaint  of  a  Queen's  County 
Farmer"  gives  us  some  ideas  of  the  diflSculties  of  the  time  in  getting 
market  price  for  his  cattle.  He  says :  **  It  takes  about  six  or  seven 
•  N.  Y.  Journal,  Ac.,  Jauaary  24, 1791. 


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FLY  MARKET.  187 

years  for  a  farmer  to  raise  a  pair  of  excellent  well-grown  oxen  and 
make  them  fat  enough  for  beef  of  the  first  quality ;  he  hopes,  when 
he  has  got  them  fit  for  the  knife,  some  batcher  will  come  along  and 
purchase  his  cattle  at  their  value ;  instead  of  this,  he  finds  the  coun- 
try is  infested  by  a  set  of  underling  drovers,  or  rather  butcher  agents, 
who  fabricate  a  thousand  lies  about  the  glut  of  the  markets,  and  the 
cheapness  of  meat ;  and  who,  after  haggling  and  teasing  him  a  long 
time  about  the  price,  worry  the  poor  farmer  at  last  into  a  bargain, 
and  buy  his  beef  for  twenty  per  cent,  less  than  the  current  rate  of  the 
market  The  agent  thus  adds  to  the  prime  cost  as  much  as  he  thinks 
proper,  and  forwards  them  to  the  butcher  at  the  new  price.  In  ad- 
dition to  this,  he  gets  his  purchase  fee,  and  laughs  in  his  sleeve  at 
the  thought  of  having  cheated  both  the  farmer  and  the  butcher/'* 

The  animals,  being  purchased,  were  driven  to  the  ferry,  then  they 
were  put  on  board  of  a  low  flat  scow  with  sprit-sail ;  and  if  in  cross- 
ing they  were  caught  in  a  stiff  breeze,  over  they  went,  often  drown- 
ing several  persons  and  animals  too.  '*0n  Friday  last  (17th  Dec., 
1795.)  one  of  the  Brooklyn  ferry-boats  was  overset  in  passing  the 
East  River;  one  man  and  seven  fat  oxen  were  drowned.^t 

These  occurrences  were  quite  common,  and  frequently  attended 
with  great  loss  of  life  and  property,  on  both  the  North  and  East 
Bivers.  The  sail  ferry-boats  were  considered  very  unsafe,  especial- 
ly on  a  windy  day,  or  from  floating  ice,  when  but  few  persons  would 
trust  their  horses,  carriages,  cattle,  or  other  property  on  them ;  pre- 
ferring to  wait  a  day  or  two  for  calm  weather.  The  oar-barges, 
for  foot-passengers,  were  thought  more  safe,  and  were  more  regular 
in  crossing*  They,  however,  were  a  great  annoyance  to  travelers 
and  business  men,  and  continued  so  until  team  or  hcrse  and  steam 
boats  were  introduced.  But  no  doubt  a  few  incidents,  since  the 
Revolution,  will  be  more  acceptable  to  the  general  reader. 

In  the  year  1784,  on  a  *' Tuesday  afternoon,  (January  15th J  as  a 
ferry-boat  was  coming  from  Powles  Hook  widi  passengers  for  this 
city,  it  unfortunately  got  between  two  cakes  of  ice,  which  so  dam- 
aged it,  that  when  they  separated,  it  soon  after  sunk,  leaving  the 
people  in  the  water,  to  struggle  for  life.  A  cake  of  ice  close  at 
hand  afforded  them  a  temporary  relief.  The  North  River  eddy, 
setting  in  around  the  Battery,  carried  them  into  the  East  River, 
where,  getting  into  the  ebb-tide,  they  were  carried  out  into  the  Bay. 
All  the  slips  being  full  of  ice,  it  was  with  difficulty  that  two  or 
three  small  boats  were  got  out  to  attempt  their  relief;  but  the  large 
fields  of  ice  at  that  moment  in  motion  rendered  every  effort  of  the 
boatmen  fruitless,  and  cut  off  every  prospect  of  deliverance  from 
•  S.  Y.  Joamal  tod  P.  B.,  March  10, 1792.  t  Ibid.,  December  22, 1795. 


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188  FLY   MARKET. 

their  miserable,  anxious  situation,  but  by  death — ^till  the  river,  being 
somewhat  free  firom  ice,  a  boat,  manned  with  hardy  soldiers,  went 
in  pursuit  of  them,  braving  every  danger,  and  persevering  through 
every  difficulty.  To  the  inexpressible  joy,  though  contrary  to  the 
expectation  of  the  town,  they  returned  just  at  dark,  (having  been 
almost  to  the  Narrows,)  and  rescued  from  the  jaws  of  death  seven 
of  the  unfortunate  people.  The  other,  a  negro  man,  perished  with 
cold.  Among  the  number  saved  are  Mr.  Buchanan,  of  Morristown ; 
Mr.  Laboyteaux  and  Mr.  Thomson,  of  this  city ;  and  we  are  happy 
to  inform  the  public  that  they  are  doing  very  well.  To  the  specta- 
tors the  sight  was  truly  distressing,  to  behold  our  fellow-creatures 
upon  the  verge  of  death,  invoking  our  assistance  in  vain,  and  expe- 
riencing the  most  torturing  anxiety  of  mind,  between  the  hopes  of 
b^ng  saved  and  the  dread  of  entering  the  inscrutable  state  of  eter- 
nity."* Then — "On  Saturday  afternoon  last,  when  a  ferry-boat 
passing  over  from  Brooklyn  to  this  city  was  suddenly  overset  This 
accident  is  said  to  have  been  occasioned  by  the  shifting  of  one  of 
the  horses,  of  which  there  were  five  on  board ;  which  so  startled  the 
rest,  that  they  all  removed  to  one  side,  when  the  boat  immediately 
filled.  The  passengers,  viz.,  Mr.  Thome,  Mr.  Stackhouse,  and  a 
servan^man,  together  with  two  ferrymen,  saved  themselves  by  swim- 
ming till  they  were  picked  up,  when  almost  exhausted,  by  several 
boats  from  the  shore  and  the  different  vessels  in  the  harbor.^'t 
Following  this,  we  find — "On  Wednesday  last,  about  one  o'clock,  as 
a  ferry-boat  was  attempting  to  cross  over  the  North  River  to 
Powles  Hook,  she  was  overset  by  a  sudden  gust  of  wind  at  no 
great  distance  from  the  shore,  and  notwithstanding  the  utmost  ex- 
ertions  of  several  who  immediately  set  out  to  their  assistance,  to 
the  evident  danger  of  their  own  lives,  three  passengers,  namely,  a 
Mr.  Elias  Gowenhouse,  of  Allantown,  a  Mr.  Young,  driver  of  one 
of  the  Philadelphia  stages,  and  a  negro  boy,  servant  to  Mr.  Van 
Voorst,  near  Powles  Hook,  were  unfortunately  drowned.  An  old 
gentleman  and  the  two  ferrymen  continued  to  hold  fast  by  the 
ropes  till  they  were  picked  up.'^t  Another  more  "melancholy  acci- 
dent happened,^'  {April  3, 1798.)  "  Yesterday,  about  12  o'clock,  one 
of  the  large  ferry-boats  which  plies  between  (the  old  ferry  stairs, 
Fly  Market,)  this  city  and  Brooklyn,  across  the  East  River,  was 
unhappily  sunk  in  a  gust  of  wind.  There  were  eight  men  in  the 
boat;  five  of  them  were  boatmen,  and  three  passengers ;  all  of  whom 
were  drowned,  except  one  of  the  boatmen."§ 
The  business  of  carrying  neat  cattle  on  the  ferry-boats  was  at 

^  Penna.  Packet,  JaQouy  22.  t  Independent  Journal 

.  t  Ibi^,  November  a  §  K.  Y.  Journal,  Ac. 


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FLY   MARKET.  ]g9 

times  objectionable  to  the  passengers;  sometimes  liaving  to  wait 
after  the  regular  periods  for  starting,  when  taking  them  off  or  on, 
and  also  when  discharging  them  at  the  ferry  landings,  at  this  and 
the  Catharine  Markets,  among  the  crowds,  was  also  a  cause  of 
complaint.  So,  on  the  30th  of  September,  1793,  ''  it  was  ordered 
that  no  cattle  be  landed  at  any  place  in  this  city  to  the  westward 
of  CoL  Rutgers,''  that  being  much  nearer  the  public  slaughter-house, 
than  at  Corlaers  Hook. 

Other  complaints  were  also  made  to  the  ferry-master,  which 
sometimes  came  from  a  belated  passenger,  of  the  want  of  prompt- 
ness ;  another,  of  the  boatmen,  whom  they  dreaded  to  sail  across 
with,  considering  their  knowledge  of  navigation,  when  either  in 
sailing  trim,  or  half-seas  over,  was  of  the  smallest  possible  descrip- 
tion. The  imagination  would  lead  one  to  think  of  the  many  wran- 
gles that  occasionally  took  place  at  the  ferry  landings  and  on  board 
of  the  boats ;  one  of  which  grew  into  a  matter  of  much  import- 
ance, and  worthy  of  notice,  took  place  in  the  year  1795. 

It  appears  that  Alderman  Furman  "  came  to  the  ferry  stairs  on 
the  Brooklyn  side  and  wanted  to  cross"  before  Ae  usual  time. 
Unpleasant  words  passed  between  him  and  two  of  the  ferrymen, 
named  Timothy  Crady  and  Thomas  Burk,  and  when  Mr.  Hicks,  the 
Conductor  of  the  Ferry,  came  down  to  order  the  boat  off,  the  Al- 
derman complained  to  him  that  these  two  men  had  abused  him ;  on 
which  Mr.  Hicks  said  to  the  Alderman,  that  it  was  the  rule  to  have 
civil  treatment  given  to  all  the  passengers,  or  words  to  that  effect. 
On  the  passage  across,  the  Alderman  being  not  yet  satisfied,  gave 
the  men  a  reprimand,  which  again  brought  forth  hard  words,  and 
finally  a  threat  from  the  Alderman  that  he  would  commit  them  to 
prison.  Timothy  Grady  said  ''  he  would  put  his  boat-hook  through 
any  man  that  would  touch  him;"  so  says  the  Alderman,  in  his  tes- 
timony before  what  was  then  known  as  the  "  Bridewell  Court."* 
When  they  reached  the  ferry  stairs  at  the  Fly  Market,  the  Aiders 
man  ordered  the  Clerk  of  the  Market  (Mr.  Cutbertson^  an  officer  J 
to  arrest  them  and  take  them  to  jail.  The  manner  of  their  being 
taken  to  the  jail  is  described  by  John  Bennet,  a  Long  Island  far- 
mer, attending  this  market,  in  a  deposition,  that  "  he  saw  Timothy 
Crady  and  Thomas  Burk  in  the  custody  of  Mr.  Culbertson,  on  their 
way  to  the  Bridewell ;  and  that  Alderman  Furman  did  punch  them 
in  the  back  with  his  cane,  saying  *  Move  on,  you  rascals — ni  fix 
you;'  and  that  he  punched  the  said  Burk  and  Crady  with  so  much 
violence,  that  they  frequently  would  yield  to  the  force  of  his  cane." 

They  were,  after  a  time,  brought  up  before  this  Bridewell  Court, 
*  N.  T.  Joamal,  Ac.,  December  26, 1795. 


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190  PLT   MARKET. 

composed  of  Mayor  Varick,  Aldermen  Beekman,  Van  Tayl,  and 
Lenox,  usually  held  at  the  Common  Jail  in  the  Park,  when  the 
testimony  of  Alderman  Wurman  was  taken;  no  other  was  offer* 
ed  against  the  prisoners.  On  their  behalf,  Jacob  Hicks  stated, 
''That  he  had  known  Thomas  Burk  as  a  ferryman  these  eighteen 
months,  during  which  time  he  sustained  the  character  of  a  good 
citizen  and  a  civil  man."  However,  in  the  end  the  Court  sen- 
tenced, "  That  you,  Timothy  Crady,  receive,  to-morrow  morning, 
twenty  lashes  on  your  bare  back,  to  impress  on  your  mind  that  you 
are  not  to  insult  men  in  oflSce ;  suffer  two  months'  imprisonment  in 
Bridewell,  at  hard  labor.  And  that  you,  Thomas  Burk,  be  impris- 
oned two  months  in  Bridewell,  at  hard  labor,  excused  from  whip- 
ping, being  interceded  for  by  Alderman  Furman." 

Other  testimony  taken  before  the  Grand  Jury  shows  "  they  were 
imprisoned  on  the  10th  of  November,  and  were  confined  twelve 
days  before  being  brought  to  trial."  The  judgment  and  sentence 
which  followed  is  reviewed  by  some  of  the  "Press"  in  communica- 
tions, cards,  and  editorials ;  the  conclusions  of  which  are  not  at  all 
flattering  to  this  "  Court,"  particularly  to  Mayor  Varick  and  Alder- 
man Lenox,  the  latter  being  severely  handled. 

The  affair  created  no  little  excitement;  and  several  citizens, 
(among  whom  were  Mr.  William  Kettletas,  the  Messrs.  Hicks,  and 
others,  who  witnessed  the  transaction  and  thought  these  ferrymen 
had  been  improperly  and  unjustly  punished,)  finding  they  could  not 
obtain  their  liberation  or  justice,  appealed  through  petitions  to  the 
Legislature  to  impeach  this  "Bridewell  Court."  The  case  was 
brought  before  the  House,  who  appointed  a  committee  to  investi- 
gate it ;  they  after  a  time  reported,  and,  after  a  severe  struggle,  the 
House  ^'Besdvedy  That  the  testimony  produced  in  support  of  the 
charges  against  Richard  Yarick,  &c.,  does  not  furnish  sufficient 
ground  for  impeachment;  acquits  them,  or  either  of  them."  This 
conclusion  was  quite  unsatisfactory,  and  more  especially  to  Mr. 
Kettletas,  who  wrote  several  communications,  showing  the  case 
more  fully,  and  somewhat  reflecting  on  the  committee. 

These  were  noticed  by  the  "  House,"  who  ordered  the  arrest  of 
Mr.  Kettletas;  which  is  shown  in  the  proceedings,  March  3, 1796. 
The  Sergeant-of-Arms,  being  attended  with  William  Kettletas  in  his 
custody,  "was  set  to  the  bar  of  this  House,  and  was  questioned  if  he 
was  the  author  of  a  certain  publication?  To  which  he  said :  ^  lam 
the  author y  and  did  direct  the  eame  to  be  printedJ  He  was  ordered 
into  the  custody  of  the  Sergeantrof-Arms.  A  resolution  was  passed 
pronouncing  him  '  guilty  of  a  misdemeanor  and  contempt  of  the  an- 
thority  of  this  House.'    That  he  '  be  brought  to  the  bar  of  this 


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FLY   MARKET.  191 

I 

Bonse,  and  upon  his  asking  pardon  of  the  House  for  his  offence,  and 
paying  the  Sergeant's  fees,  he  be  discharged  from  custody.'  He 
was  brought  before  them  again,  when  he  answered:  ^ lam  not  con-^ 
sciaua  cf  having  committed  any  offenoCj  and  there/ore  I  wHl  not  ask 
the  pardon  of  this  HouaeJ  He  then  was  delivered  to  the  keeper  of 
the  goal  of  the  City  and  County  of  New  York,  and  confined  in  the 
same  prison  with  the  two  ferrymen. " 

From  this  prison  he  addresses  a  note  to  the  editor  of  the  New 
York  Journal,  which  is  found  in  that  paper,  dated  April  1, 1796, 
as  follows: 

'*Mr.  &reenleaf— It  is  with  the  deepest  regret  I  announce  to  my 
fellow*citizens  a  confirmation  of  the  late  melancholy  report  of  the 
death  of  the  unfortunate  Timothy  Crady.  Whether  his  death  was 
in  consequence  of  the  25  unjust  stripes  he  received  by  order  of  the 
'  Bridewell  Court,'  or  not,  is  reserved  for  the  decision  of  that  tribunal, 
before  whom  it  will  be  my  duty,  as  well  as  e^ry  other  citizen's,  to 
submit  this  solemn  question.  The  confirmation  of  his  death  was 
made  known  to  me,  on  the  28th  instant,  by  Thomas  Burk,  the  sur- 
viving fellow-sufferer,  who  has  returned  to  his  former  place  of  resi- 
dence at  Brooklyn.  Which  fact  I  immediately  communicated  to 
William  Slo,  the  Bridewell  master,  from  whose  custody,  it  has  been 
said,  the  said  Burk  escaped  before  the  sentence  of  the  *  Bridewell 
Court'  was  executed.  Mr.  Slo  returned  me  for  answer,  that  he 
should  not  trouble  himself  about  the  said  Burk,  except  he  came  in 
his  way.  This  fact,  relative  to  the  conduct  of  Mr.  Slo,  I  think 
proper  to  make  public,  that  the  *  Bridewell  Court'  may  take  such 
steps  to  support  the  law  as  the  law  expressly  enjoins." 

Mr.  Eettletas  was  confined  in  prison  until  the  Legislature  ad- 
journed ;  he  was  then  by  a  habeas  corpus  liberated  on  the  12th  of 
April.  The  ''Journal^^  says:  *'0n  this  occasion  a  number  of  citi- 
sens  attended  at  the  prison,  and  forced  him  into  a  phaeton,  in  which 
they  paraded  him  in  triumph. 

''On  the  phaeton  were  displayed  the  American  and  French  flags, 
the  Cap  of  Liberty,  supported  by  Mr.  Kettletas,  and  a  painted  rep- 
resentation of  a  man  whipped  at  the  whipping-post,  after  the  Bride- 
well mode,  with  a  scroll  in  these  words  over  the  head  of  the  whip- 
per:  *  What!  you  rascal,  insult  your  superiors!^  The  phaeton  was 
drawn  by  citizens  through  the  principal  streets  in  the  city,  drums 
beating,  with  a  numerous  body  of  attendants,  to  the  Tontine ;  from 
thence  up  Wall  Street  into  Broadway,  down  by  the  Government 
House,  and  back  to  Hunter's  Hotel,  where  Mr.  Kettletas  made  a 
short  speech  to  the  people  in  nearly  the  following  words:  'Feffoir- 
cUistens — I  thank  you  for  the  respect  which  you  have  this  day  paid 


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192  FLY  IfARKBT. 

me;  in  a  particular  manner  for  the  honor  of  bearing  the  Standard 
of  Liberty,  which  you  have  placed  in  my  hands.  Your  decontm, 
combined  with  all  jonr  insignias,  evidence  to  me  yonr  attachment 
to  the  Constitution  and  the  laws  of  your  country ;  they  are  the  beet 
supporters  of  liberty,  and  I  am  sure  you  revere  them.'  He  was  then 
set  down  at  his  own  door,  and  the  company,  after  giving  three  (Jieers^ 
retired  in  the  utmost  order,  enraptured  with  the  virtues  of  their  fel- 
low-citizen, who  had  endured  nearyfw  wedu'  imprisonment,  by  what 
has  been  called  an  arbitrary  edict  J^ 

Mr.  Kettletas  was  not  yet  satisfied  that  justice  had  been  done  to 
Bnrk,  so  he  brings  a  suit  '*for  cruelty  and  iqjustioe"  against  this 
"  Bridewell  Oourt,''  for  Thomas  Burk,  and  in  the  end  recovered,  or 
rather  it  was  settled,  by  paying  Burk  500  dollars.* 

Another  melancholy  accident,  occurring  through  the  inefiBciency 
of  the  ferrymen,  is  noticed  in  a  "  communication,''  about  four  years 
after,  which  reads:  ''  Qaving  seen  several  erroneous  accounts  in  the 
papers  respecting  the  upsetting  of  the  ferry-boat  at  Fly  Market, 
and  being  myself  on  board  at  the  time,  will  thank  you  to  publish  the 
following:  We  started  from  Fly  Market  Ferry  Stairs  with  little 
wind,  but  there  was  a  prospect  that  the  wind  would  blow  very  fresh, 
so  that  the  passengers  desired  the  boatmen  to  brail  up  the  sail,  which 
they  would  not  comply  with.  Some  of  the  passengers  wished  and 
talked  of  taking  charge  of  the  boat  themselves.  We  considered  the 
boatmen  incapable  of  conducting  the  boat,  owing  to  intoxuxUion : 
however,  we  concluded  that  no  man  would  be  employed  in  that  busi* 
ness  unless  they  were  capable  of  the  task ;  but  unfortunately  we  suf- 
fered them  to  proceed.  The  first  gust  that  came  upset  us,  and  sev- 
eral of  the  passengers  were  immediately  lost.  As  near  as  I  can 
recollect,  there  was  in  the  boat  about  twelve  persons— one  woman 
and  five  men  were  immediately  drowned — ^six  of  us  were  saved  after 
having  been  upset,  nearly  one  hour  and  an  half  in  the  water.  One, 
after  the  storm  was  over,  being  spent,  could  no  longer  hold  fast,  but 
let  go  and  was  drowned.  There  were  three  horses  and  a  chair  (a 
two-wheekd  carriage  on  leather  springs)  on  board."t 

Then  we  have  a  communication  from  an  '*  Enquirer/'  in  the  month 
of  January,  1804,  who  says:  "On  Wednesday  morning,  I  had  occa* 
sion  to  cross  from  the  Powles  Hook  Ferry  Stairs,  New  York,  to  the 
Jersey  side.  On  my  arrival  at  the  boat,  I  found  the  wind  to  blow 
quite  fresh ;  upon  which  I  asked  the  ferry-master  if  the  boatmen  had 
not  better  take  a  reef  in  their  sails?  He  answered  me,  no ;  and  the 
mvlaJtto  captain  also  replied,  there  was  no  danger ;  he  would  carry 
us  across  safely.  Though  after  these  answers,  I  did  not  feel  myself 
•  N.  T.  Joonud,  Ac,  Fcliraarj  S,  1797.       f  American  Citisen,  lUj  27,  ISOL 


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FLT  MARKET.  193 

free  from  apprehension  of  danger,  I  agreed  with  the  rest  to  take  my 
passage,  with  a  promise  to  myself,  that  if  there  should  be  an  increase 
of  wind,  I  would  endeavor  to  persuade  our  captain  to  take  in  sail. 
I  soon  found  my  fears  were  not  unfounded,  as  at  every  flaw  the  pit- 
tiauger  went  gunnel  under.  I  then  expressed  my  wish  that  they 
would  either  reef  the  sails  or  take  in  one — this  was  also  answered  by 
a  cry  on  the  part  of  our  ooptotfi,  There  is  no  danger.  Soon  after  a 
flaw  took  us,  and  one  or  two  afterwards,  so  severe  that  it  is  a  mir- 
acle of  miracles  we  were  not  all  sent  into  eternity.  Independent 
of  this,  there  was  a  person  on  board  with  a  horse  and  chair,  who 
miraculously  escaped  having  his  leg  broken  by  the  carriage  tumbling 
about,  and  jamming  his  leg  against  the  side  of  the  boat.  This  per- 
son lost  several  articles  of  his  travelling  apparatus  overboard.  He 
appeared  much  enraged,  and  after  his  arrival  on  the  other  side,  ap- 
plied to  the  ferry-master  for  his  property  to  be  replaced.  The  only 
satisfaction  he  got  from  the  ferryman,  that  the  ferrymen's  lives  were 
in  as  much  danger  as  the  passengers'.  The  person  alluded  to  said 
he  would  publish  the  circumstance  the  next  day ;  but  as  I  have  not 
seen  it,  if  you  think  these  lines  in  a  fit  state  for  publication,  you  will 
please  give  them  a  place  in  your  paper."* 

Three  years  after,  in  the  month  of  February,  was  noticed:  "On 
Friday,  at  5  P.  M.,  a  large  boat  of  the  old  ferry,  laden  with  flour, 
which  was  stowed  too  much  on  her  bows,  sunk  in  the  middle  of  the 
river,  with  six  persons  on  board,  who  were  picked  up  by  boats  which 
went  off  to  their  assistance."  The  next  year:  "On  Monday  night, 
(January  14,)  the  Powles  Hook  Ferry-boats,  Dolphin  and  RavMer^ 
owned  by  Hr.  Holdram,  were  cut  by  the  ice  in  Whitehall  Slip  and 
sunk.  They  were  laden  with  country  produce;  the  greatest  part  of 
which  was  saved."  Then  following,  on  the  21st  instant,  "One  of 
the  Powles  Hook  Ferry-boats,  with  a  quantity  of  wood  and  25  pas- 
sengers, had  nearly  been  lost  on  Saturday  (19th)  at  noon.  She  was 
coming  before  the  wind,  When  a  sea  struck  her,  and  went  over  her 
fore  and  aft,  and  filled  her  nearly  half  full  of  water.  The  passen- 
gers waved  their  hats  for  assistance,  but  were  fortunately  landed  in 
Bafety."t 

We  are  shown  in  the  following  verses  some  of  the  troubles  of  the 
olden  time,  in 

"CROSSING   THE   PERRY." 

<*  T'  other  daj»  being  oaird  to  New  Tork  in  a  hnrry^ 
And  obliged,  noleru  volen$,  to  croas  o'er  the  Ferry, 
I  bad  waited  impatient  eome  time  on  the  stairs, 
When  '  Harrj— she's  going  1'  sainted  mj  ean. 

*  Dailj  Advertiser.  t  Homing  Chronicle,  Jannaiy  16, 18ML 

Vol.  L— 13 


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194  FI«r  MABKJST. 

So  I  Bonmbled  on  board,  took  mj  Mtt  in  the  stern. 
And  (aa  uoial)  was  waiting  for  freight,  in  the  snn  I 
Tili  at  length,  'mid  some  oaths,  and  *  For  G—  sake  posh  offl' 
The  men  took  their  oars,  and  were  leaving  the  wharfl 
<  Hold  on,  there-^hold  on  I  here  'a  a  man  oomtng  down 
With  a  cart-load  of  things  to  go  over  to  town- 
Hold  on,  there — ^hold  on !  here's  a  woman  in  sight — 
Hold  on  just  a  bit— I  shall  get  two-pence  by 't  1' 
With  a  smart  epnaky  onw,  who  were  not  in  conditioa 
To  bear  any  longer  snch  great  impositioo, 
We  all  rose  at  once— spoke  in  laogaage  of  thnnder, 
And  oar  great  noble  Captain  was  forced  to  knock  nnder."* 

"  Crossing  the  Ferry,"  at  New  York,  with  the  first  steam  ferry- 
boat, was  made  on  the  North  River,  by  Mr.  John  Stevens,  on  or 
about  the  18th  of  September,  1811.  The  first  announcement  of  it 
appears  in  the  '"Press"  of  that  date,  as  follows:  ''  Hoboken  Steam- 
boat.— Mr.  Godwin  respectfully  acquaints  the  citizens  of  New  York 
and  the  public  at  large,  that  he  has  commenced  running  a  steamboat 
on  the  Hoboken  Ferry,  of  large  and  convenient  size,  and  capable  of 
affording  accommodation  in  a  very  extensive  degree.  The  boat 
moves  with  uncommon  speed  and  facility,  and  starts  from  the  usual 
Ferry  Stairs,  at  the  Corporation  Wharf,  foot  of  Vesey  Street,  New 
York,  where  passages  may  be  taken  at  any  hour  of  the  day."t 

On  the  24th  of  the  same  month,  the  following  editorial  appears: 
''  Steamboats  are  rapidly  getting  into  '  the  full  tide  of  successful  ex- 
periment' in  this  country.  Last  week  one  of  Colonel  Stevens'  ferry* 
boats,  employed  by  Mr.  Godwin,  of  Hoboken,  was  started  into  opera- 
tion, and  yesterday  made  16  trips  back  and  forth,  between  that  place 
and  this  city,  with  a  probable  average  of  100  passengers  each  trip. 
Her  machinery,  we  understand,  is  somewhat  different  from  that  of 
the  large  Nor^  River  boats,  and  we  presume  she  sails  considerably 
faster  than  any  other  heretoifore  constructed  in  our  waters."^ 

The  North  River  boats,  or  rather  the  first  successful  steamboat 
introduced  on  the  North  River,  appeared  and  commenced  the  first 
trip  to  Albany  on  Monday,  the  17th  of  September,  1807,  at  1  o'clock, 
P.  M.  She  was  called  *'  Clermont"  after  the  country  seat  of  Chan- 
cellor Livingston,  on  the  North  River,  about  110  miles  from  New 
York.  The  particulars  of  the  "Clermont's"  first  trip  to  Albany 
with  passengers  are  thus  given  by  a  number  of  witnesses  who  have 
subscribed  their  names,  as  noticed  in  the  Press : 

"Steamboat. — On  Friday  morning  last,  {September  4th,)  at  18 

minutes  before  7  o'clock,  the  North  River  steamboat  left  New  York, 

landed  one  passenger  at  Tarrytown,  and  arrived  ^t  Newburgh  at  4 

o'clock  in  the  afternoon;  landed  a  passenger  there  and  arrived  at 

*  L.  I,  Star,  September  4,  ISll.  f  '*  Golnmbian."  t  Ibid. 


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FLY   MARKET.  195 

*OIermont/  where  two  passengers  were  landed  at  15  minutes  before 
2  o'clock  in  the  morning,  and  arrived  at  Albany  at  three-quarters  of 
an  hour  past  10,  making  the  whole  time  28  and  a  half  hours — dis- 
tance 165  miles.  The  wind  favorable  but  light  from  Yerplank's 
Point  to  Wapping's  Creek ;  the  remainder  of  the  way  it  was  head 
wind  or  a  dead  calm.    This  was  signed  by 

''  Selah  Strong,        Qarrit  Van  Wagennen,  Thomas  Wallace, 
John  L.  Wilson,   John  P.  Anthony,  Wm.  S.  Hicks, 

Deimis  Moore,      O.  0.  Wetmore,  J.  Bauman, 

J.  Crane,  James  Braiden,  Stej^en  N.  Power. 

"Dated  Albany,  Sept.  5, 1807."* 

This  boat  was  built  by  Hr.  Charles  Brown,  at  his  ship-yards  on 
the  East  River,  from  which  she  was  launched  in  the  spring  of  1807. 
The  engine  put  into  her  was  made  in  England,  and  in  the  month  of 
August,  she  was  found  completed,  so  as  to  be  moved  from  her  berth 
around  to  the  Jersey  shore  by  her  machinery,  much  to  the  surprise 
and  admiration  of  hundreds  who  witnessed  this  first  successful  steam- 
boat in  our  waters. 

With  the  ferry-boats  there  was  quite  a  competition  between  Ful- 
ton, who  represented  the  Powles  Hook  Perry  Company,  and  Col. 
John  Stevens,  that  of  the  Hoboken  Ferry.  Colonel  Stevens,  as  it 
appears,  brought  forth  tl^  first  passenger  steam  ferry-boat ;  but  Ful- 
ton produced,  although  at  a  later  period,  a  boat  (or  rather  a  double 
boat)  which  proved  successful  for  the  general  wants  and  uses  of  a 
ferry-boat. 

Tie  remarks  of  the  "  Press,"  made  at  that  period,  will  give  the 
reader  a  much  better  knowledge  of  their  several  merits ;  and  having 
noticed  Colonel  Stevens',  we  tucn  to  Fulton's,  which  is  found  in  the 
month  of  July  following.  "  The  large  and  commodious  steamboat 
which  has  been  for  some  time  erecting  in  this  city  by  Mr.  Fulton,  as 
a  ferry-boat  to  ply  between  this  city  and  the  City  of  Jersey,  will  be 
in  full  operation  on  Thursday  next,  {Jviy  2.)  The  crossing  the 
North  River  has  been  such  an  obstacle  to  the  communication  with 
this  city,  that  it  is  a  matter  of  real  congratulation  to  the  public 
that  their  difficulties  are  removed.  The  most  timid  may  cross  now 
without  fear.  As  the  fare  of  a  market  wagon,  loaded,  will  be  but 
fifty  cents,  there  is  no  doubt  but  our  markets  will  be  better  sup- 
plied than  ever  they  have  been."t 

On  the  20th  of  July  following,  a  description  is  given  of  ^*FuUon^8 

Steam  Ferry-Boat"    ''.This  excellent  machine,  consisting  of  a  boat 

with  two  hdls,  connected  by  a  single  platform,  with  a  wheel  in  the 

space  between  them,  and  rudders  at  each  end,  built  for  the  convey- 

•  OaUj  AdverOser,  September  11, 1607.  f  **  CkAombian,"  July  1, 1813. 


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196  ^^"^   MARKET. 

ance  of  passengers  across  the  Hudson,  has  got  into  suooessfiil  oper* 
ation,  and  promises  extraordinary  facilities  for  traveling.  Horsea 
and  wagons  stand  on  each  side  of  the  machinery,  driving  in  at  one 
end  from  a  floating  bridge  fitted  to  the  boat,  and  ont  at  the  oilier, 
without  rising  or  descending  six  inches  in  accomplishing  the  pas- 
sage from  street  to  street  on  each  side  the  river.  The  boat  is 
constructed  with  both  ends  alike,  and  never  turns  in  sailing,  but 
goes  back  and  forth  by  changing  the  motion  of  the  wheel." 

"On  Sunday,  the  corps  of  Flying  Artillery  crossed  in  the  boat 
from  Paulus  Hook  to  the  city,  on  its  way  to  Albany,  at  four  trips; 
on  the  first  of  which  it  brought  4  pieces  of  artillery,  (6-pounders,) 
and  limbers,  ammunition-wagons,  27  horses,  and  40  soldiers,  besides 
other  passengers."  Another  account  says,  " The  'steam  ferry-boat' 
crosses  the  Hudson  twice  in  each  hour  during  the  day.  Yesterday, 
(September  15,)  in  crossing  from  Paulus  Hook,  the  boat  contained 
about  500  persons,  besides  a  coach  and  a  pair  of  horses,  a  phaeton 
and  pair,  a  horse  and  chair,  and  five  saddle-horses." 

The  great  number  of  soldiers  and  other  persons  crossing  the  fer- 
ries at  this  period  was  on  account  of  the  preparations  for  war  with 
England. 

The  want  of  a  team  or  steam  ferry-boat  on  the  East  River  was 
the  occasion  of  a  large  amount  of  property  lost  by  fire  on  the  23d 
of  September,  1812,  in  Brooklyn.  The  "Press,"  the  next  day,  says, 
"  Last  evening,  about  eight  o'clock,  a  tremendous  fire  broke  out  at 
Brooklyn  in  Ben'n  Smith's  large  stable,  (in  which  nine  horses  were 
destroyed,)  situated  near  the  old  ferry,  east  side  of  Main  Street, 
which  consumed  the  building  where  it  originated,  together  with 
Chas.  Hewlet's  grocery^tore,  T.  Hicks  and  Van  Mater's  stables, 
and  the  large  store-house  known  as  the  Corporation  Buildings." 
Three  dwelling-houses  were  also  injured.  "  We  are  informed  that 
if  it  had  not  been  for  the  arrival  of  the  floating  and  other  engines 
from  this  city,  the  fire  would  in  all  probability  have  crossed  the 
street,  and  the  whole  town  would  have  been  in  danger.  It  is  sup- 
posed the  flames  would  have  been  sooner  arrested,  had  not  the  New 
York  firemen  been  hindered  at  the  ferries;  the  large  ferry-boat 
happened  to  be  on  the  Brooklyn  side  at  the  time  of  the  alarm." 

The  editor  of  the  "Long  Island  Star"  says,  "We  are  proud  to 
acknowledge  the  services  of  the  firemen  of  New  York,  who  came 
over  to  the  assistance  of  Brooklyn  during  the  late  fire.  Besides 
the  Floating  Engine,  there  were  Nos.  5,  7, 11, 18,  21,  22,  and  87. 
We  observe  in  several  daily  papers  the  acknowledgments  of  the 
firemen  to  individuals  of  our  village  for  the  refreshments  provided 
for  them  on  that  occasion.    In  one  communication  is  observed,  that 


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FLY  MABRET.  197 

ererj  public,  as  well  as  many  private  houses,  were  solicitous  for  the 
refir^ment  of  the  firemen.  The  engineers  of  the  town,  in  behalf 
of  the  members  of  the  Fire  Department,  thanked  the  firemen  of 
New  York,  and  also  'to  Captain  Robert  L.  Gardiner,  of  the 
(JUhing)  smack,  for  his  willing  and  friendly  exertions  in  transport- 
ing two  engines,  with  their  members,  across  the  East  River,  and  to 
our  townsmen  for  the  refreshments  they  afforded  to  the  firemen 
generally/  John  Doughty  and  David  Sbaman." 

The  New  York  firemen  ''send  the  following  to  be  published: 
The  disastrous  fire  of  the  23d  which  your  village  suffered,  and  the 
sundry  late  fires,  ought  to  awaken  the  inhabitants  to  make  all  pos* 
sible  preparations  to  facilitate  the  extinguishing  of  fires.  When- 
ever you  have  been  visited  by  a  fire  of  any  magnitude,  some  of  the 
firemen  of  New  York,  with  their  engines,  have  gone  to  your  relief. 
Had  there  been  any  ferry-boats  or  other  conveyance  at  command, 
you  would  at  all  times  receive  much  earlier  assistance.  Not  a 
boat  belonged  to  your  ferry  sufficiently  large  to  convey  one  engine, 
nor  did  any  cross  till  after  the  fire  had  raged  for  two  hours.  I 
would  propose  to  your  inhabitants  that  they  build  two  scows,  one 
for  each  ferry,  sufficiently  large  to  take  in  two  or  three  engines ;  that 
iheee  boats  be  deposited  in  our  ferry  slip,  in  which  case  you  may  at 
all  times  calculate  upon  assistance  from  the  New  York  firemen.'' 

It  was  not  long  after,  when  a  decided  improvement  was  made  on 
this  river,  by  the  introduction  of  a  "horse  ferry-boat,"  first  started 
on  the  '*  Catharine  Slip  Ferry,''  and  particularly  noticed  in  the 
''Long  Island  Star,"  as  follows:*  ^^New  Ferry-Boats. — On  Sunday 
last  (AprU  3, 1814,)  the  public  were  gratified  by  the  performance 
of  a  new-invented  ferry-boat  on  the  New  (Catharine  Street)  Ferry, 
between  this  village  and  New  York.  This  boat  was  invented  by 
Moses  Rogers,  Esq.,  of  New  York.  It  is  in  some  respects  similar 
to  the  Faulus  Hook  ferry-boats,  and  calculated  to  receive  wagons  in 
the  same  commodious  way ;  but  the  water-wheel  in  the  centre  is 
moved  by  eight  horses.  It  crossed  the  river  twelve  times  during 
the  day,  in  from  eight  to  thirteen  minutes  each,  and  averaging  two 
hundred  passengers  each  time.  It  makes  good  way  against  wind 
and  tide,  and  promises  to  be  an  important  acquisition.  Another 
boat,  to  go  by  horses,  is  now  building  for  that  ferry ;  and  a  steam- 
boat, belonging  to  William  Cutting  and  others,  is  nearly  ready  for 
the  ferry  between  Brooklyn  and  Beekman  Slip.  These  great  im- 
provements on  the  ferries  cannot  fail  to  benefit  this  village  and  the 
a4jacent  country."  It  was  announced,  two  days  after,  '*  The  horse- 
boat  will  continue  to  run  from  the  New  Ferry  to  Brooklyn  until 

•  NMaiiibian,"  April  7, 1S14 


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198  FLT  MARKET. 

« 
the  first  of  May,  as  a  temporary  arrangement.    Passengers  will  be 
charged  four  cents;  two  of  which  are  for  the  owner  of  the  ferry, 
and  two  cents  for  the  owner  of  the  boat.    All  other  articles  at  the 
rates  heretofore  charged  in  the  roio-bocUsJ^ 

On  the  8th  of  the  next  month  after,  was  introduced  the  first 
"Brooklyn  Steam  Ferry^Boat.— The  'Nassau,'  the  new  steamboat 
belonging  to  Messrs.  Gutting  &  Co.,  which  commenced  running 
from  Beckman  Slip  to  the  lower  ferry  at  Brooklyn  a  few  days  ago, 
carried  in  one  of  her  first  trips  549  (another  counted  550)  passen- 
gers, one  wagon  and  a  pair  of  horses,  two  horses  and  chairs,  and 
one  single  horse.  She  has  made  a  trip  in /our  minuteSf  and  gener* 
ally  takes  from  four  to  eight,  and  has  crossed  the  riyer  forty  times 
in  one  day."*  "  Yesterday,  (Sunday,  May  lOthJ  between  twelve 
and  one  o'clock,  Mr.  Lewis  Rhoda  accidentally  got  hurled  into  the 
machinery  of  the  new  steamboat  ^Nassav,'  which  cut  off  his  left  arm 
a  little  below  the  elbow,  and  broke  his  neck.  He  expired  in  about 
three  hours  after."t 

"The  boat  impelled  by  horses  from  the  New  (Catharine)  Slip  to  the 
upper  Brooklyn  Ferry  carried  at  one  time  548  passengers,  besides 
some  carriages  and  horses.  And  a  horse-boat  is  to  run  soon  from 
Grand  Street  Dock  to  Williamsburgh,"  which  boat  was  noticed  on 
the  following  4th  of  June :  "  This  morning  was  launched,  at  the  ship* 
yard  of  Mr.  Gharles  Browne,  an  elegant  double  boat,  intended  to 
ply  as  a  ferry-boat  from  Gorlaes  Hook  to  Williamsburgh,  Long 
Island.  This  beautiful  boat  is  called  the  '  Williamsburgh,*  and  is  to 
be  propelled  by  horse-power,  with  machinery  very  different  from  that 
already  constructed  and  used  in  the  Hoboken  or  Brooklyn  boats,  and 
is  thought  by  competent  judges  to  be  very  complete.  It  is  supposed 
that  two  or  three  weeks  may  yet  be  required  to  complete  the  mar 
chinery,  &c.,  before  she  can  be  placed  in  her  station." 

The  benefit  arising  from  these  sieam  and  teamferry-ioaJta  soon  be> 
gan  to  be  experienced  by  our  dty,  as  well  as  by  Long  Island  and 
New  Jersey ;  from  whence  loaded  wagons  were  hourly  seen  through 
the  day  crossing  these  ferries,  laden  with  the  productions  of  the 
farmers  of  these  different  places,  and  more  especially  from  Sag  Har* 
bor  and  the  lower  parts  of  Long  Island. 

From  this  period,  year  after  year,  were  introduced  new  boats  of 
various  styles,  and  with  increased  speed  and  accommodations,  upon 
the  various  routes,  which  have  also  much  increased. 

To  the  year  1795  we  again  turn,  and  find  the  principal  part  of 
these  market  buildings  had  been  built  many  years,  and  being  mere 
wooden  sheds,  had  now  become  dilapidated,  leaky,  and  greatly  needr 

•  «  ColnmbiMi,''  lUj  IS,  1814.  f  L.  L  8Ur,  May  11, 1814. 


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FLT  MARKET.  I99 

ed  repura;  besides,  the  market  was  on  certain  dajs  overcrowded, 
and  afforded  no  shelter  from  the  storms  or  son,  especially  for  the 
many  oomtry  people.  Petitions  were  presented  asking  for  repairs 
and  gpreater  accommodations,  which  the  Common  Council  wished  to 
accede  to,  but  they  thought  the  neighborhood,  or  those  who  were 
eiyoying  a  large  business  or  benefit,  ought  to  assist  in  famishing 
the  necessary  accommodations,  as  they  bad  always  done  on  former  oc- 
casions. Many  of  the  "  neighborhood,"  however,  thought  the  mar- 
ket revenue  was  more  than  sujficient  to  maintain  it,  and  they  would 
not  subscribe  as  usual.  But  several  young  butchers,  who  had  '*  shirk 
Hands*^  in  the  "  lower  market,"  and  others,  came  forward  with  peti- 
tions, among  whom  were  Daniel  Winship,  George  Goodheart,  John 
Pell,  George  Harkler  (Merkle,)  Cornelius  Schuyler,  and  John  Cor* 
bey,  present  one  on  the  17th  of  August,  (1795,)  in  which  they  state: 
"^  They  have  served  regular  apprenticeship  to  the  butcher's  trade  in 
the  dty,  and  some  have  been  working  for  themselves  three  or  four 
years.  They  have  been  killing  '  small  creatures,'  and  selling  their 
meat  by  the  quarter."  They  '*  find  this  mode  of  doing  business  will 
not  answer  their  purpose;  they  have  nothing  but  their  trade  to  de- 
pend upon;"  they  "conceive  they  might  be  accommodated  with 
stands  in  that  part  of  the  Fly  Market  where  they  now  sell  their 
meat,  without  taking  up  more  room  than  they  do  at  present,  and  in 
soch  case  the  petitioners  would  each  of  them  willingly  pay  *  one  hun- 
dred dollars,'  to  be  expended  in  repairing  or  enlarging  the  market, 
Ac, ;  and  they  are  all  recommended  as  proper  persons  by  many  of  the 
older  butchers."  Then,  on  the  19th  instant  following,  George  Mes- 
serve,  Jr.»  says:  "He  has  served  a  regular  apprenticeship  to  the 
butcher's  trade,  with  his  father,  Mr.  George  Messerve,  and  he  now 
wishes  to  set  up  for  himself,  and  carry  on  his  business,  which  he  can^ 
not  do  without  having  a  proper  stand  (m  the  '  lower  market ')  for 
that  purpose."  He  "  is  willing  to  pay  one  hundred  doB/ora  towards 
repairing  or  enlarging  the  markets,  or  for  any  other  purpose,"  Ac. 
The  following  certify,  that  he'sustains  the  character  of  an  honest, 
industrious  man,  and  recommend  him,  Ac. : 
John  Lamb,  John  Lasher,  M.  Willett, 

G.  Bauman,  Peter  T.  Curtenius      Walter  Bicker, 

John  Stoutenbugh,  S.  Roorbeck,  John  J.  Montayne, 

Geo.  Marvin,  Stephen  M'Crea,  William  Bdgar, 

Biohard  Yarian,       Esekiel  Robins,  Michael  Yarian. 

Caleb  Yandenburgh  also  petitions  in  the  following  November, 
and  says:  "  He  is  a  native  of  this  city,iind  has  served  an  apprentice- 
ddp;  requests  a  stand  in  the  lower  Fly  Market."  We  find  the  fol- 
lowing old  butchers  certify  to  his  "  apprenticeship:" 


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200  '^Y  MARKET. 

William  Wright,       William  Post,  John  Lorell, 

John  Finck  {Fink)   John  Doughty,  Jr.,       John  Norman, 
Isaac  Yarian,  William  Moonej,  George  Robert  Bedc, 

Joseph  0.  Bogert,     John  Fitzgerald,  William  Everett,  Jr., 

Edward  Mooney,       John  Pessinger,  Abraham  Bogert, 

James  Sullivan,         Joseph  Nott,  Stephen  Hilliker,  and 

James  Harsh. 

There  were  large  number^  applying  for  these  and  other  stands; 
and  others,  again,  to  be  licensed  as  regular  butchers;  the  Board, 
however,  had  not  yet  concluded  to  enlarge  or  rebuild^  but  recom- 
mended  the  Mayor  to  "  License  all  persons  of  good  character  who 
shall  apply  for  license,  provided  they  shall  have  served  an  appren- 
ticeship to  the  business  in  this  city." 

A  law  had  many  years  before  passed,  that  ''No  person  shall  exer- 
cise the  office  of  a  butcher  in  this  city,  unless  he  is  licensed  for  that 
purpose  by  the  Mayor,  under  the  penalty  of  five  pounds  for  every 
offence ;  and  that  every  butcher  shall  hold  his  office  during  the  pleas- 
ure of  the  Corporation  only." 

The  next  year,  (1796,)  on  the  7th  of  March,  a  committee,  consist- 
ing of  Aldermen  Robert  Lenox,  Andrew  Van  Tuyl,  and  Nicholas 
Carmer,  reported  on  the  condition  of  these  old  buildings;  part  of 
which  appears  as  follows:  "  That  the  upper  and  middle  markets  re- 
quire new  floors,  and  the  latter  a  new  roof;  but  as  the  repairs,  if 
carried  into  effect,  would  only  be  temporary,  and  ill  comport  with 
the  public  spirit,  they  conclude  it  cheapest  in  the  end  to  make  per- 
manent improvements."  This  conclusion  encourage  a  petition  to 
have  a  new  building  placed  along  Front  towards  Wall  Street,  which 
was  soon  followed  with  a  stronger  one  opposed  to  it;  however,  the 
old  site  was  decided  on,  and  on  the  22d  of  August,  the  committee 
were  ordered  to  proceed  in  the  rebuilding  the  market-house,  running 
from  Water  to  Front  Street,  by  contract,  and  cause  the  old  building 
to  be  sold. 

It  appeared  finished  early  in  the  month  of  November,  *'  supported 
with  brick  pillars,  and  ceiled  with  lath  and  plaster." 

In  consequence  of  it  being  next  to  the  country  and  fish  market, 
there  were  many  applications  for  the  stands ;  so  numerous  were  they, 
that  the  Oommon  Oouncil  concluded  to  sell  them  at  public  auction; 
and  on  the  14th  of  the  same  month,  a  committee  reported,  "  that 
the  following  fourteen  unappropriated  stands  in  the  lower  market " 
were  "  exposed  to  public  sale  in  the  market  on  Saturday  last,  (ISUA 
in8t.)  under  the  conditions  and  for  the  sums  mentioned  (below,)  and 
that  they  allowed  Mr.  (Frederick)  Jay,  the  vendue  master,  for  Ud 
commission,  eight  dollars.    Signed,  Robsbt  Lbnoz,  Ac'^ 

They  were  sold  to  the  following  persons,  at  the  prices  named: 


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FLT   MARKET.  201 

Ma  72.  Geoige  MMiolt,        •  £530  Na  65.  Be^Jamla  Con^  £165 

**  7L  DftTid  SeuiMi,      -  290  "   64.  Henrjr  Lovell,   -  -      280 

»  70.  John  Pell,         -       •  285  «  6S.  Immo  Bajes,  -       •  180 

'«  69.  Dftotel  Winflhip,      -  205  "62.  John  Penlnger,  •      150 

^  68.  G€0C8e  MeHerre,      •  320  <«  61.  ConieUiu  Schuyler,  175 

•*  67.  WhUehe«d  CoraeU»  170  «<   60.  fiurdei  Striker,       •  210 

•"  66.  James  Toang,        -  310  «   59.  Andrew  Rom,   -  -      200 

£2,110  Whole  amoant,    •       -       £3,470 

These  conditions  were :  *'  None  to  buy  bat  licensed  butchers,  sub- 
ject to  such  regulations  and  fees  as  the  Corporation  may  make  from 
time  to  time,  and  no  transfer  of  any  stall  so  purchased  to  be  made 
without  leare  of  the  Corporation. 

^  Butchers  who  have  stands  in  the  upper  market,  and  becoming  a 
purchaser  in  the  Unoer  market,  are  considered  to  have  forfeited  their 
stalls  in  the  upper  market. 

^  None  of  the  butchers  in  the  other  markets  are  to  have  leave  to 
become  purchasers  in  the  Fly  Market.  ' 

"A  credit  of  thirty,  sixty,  and  ninety  days  is  given  for  the  pur- 
chase money,  upon  giving  such  notes  to  Mr.  (Danid)  Phoenix  as  he 
shall  approve ;''  when  he  gave  a  receipt  as  follows: 

*'  New  York,  November  14,  1796,  received  of  {John  PeB,)  his 
notes,  payable  at  thirty,  sixty,  and  ninety  days,  for  two  hundred  and 
eighty-five  pounds;  which,  when  paid,  will  be  the  consideration 
money  for  stand  No.  70  in  the  lower  market. 

"  Daniel  Phoenix,  Oiiy  Treasurer.*' 

These  fourteen  stands  were  the  cause  of  a  long-contested  law-suit 
in  1822,  at  which  date  they  will  be  referred  to.  The  large  amount 
of  money  which  these  stands  brought  induced  the  Corporation  to 
order  all  the  vacant  stands  in  the  upper  market  to  be  sold  at  public 
auction  on  the  following  28th  instant;  when  a  committee  reported 
their  sale  as  follows: 


ffo.    3.  David  Man.     -       -       £58 

BroQghtnp,      - 

-     £303 

««     7.  Matlhew  Fox,     -       -     85 

•       75 

«<     9.  Matthew  PogeKro^l,)   62 

«<   19.  John  Barr,  - 

-      60 

*'  13.  Daniel  Enalej,  Jr.,    •       43 

«   18.  John  Garbjr,    • 

40 

"   15.  Nicholas  Smart,    -       •    55 

"     a  John  Deavenport, 

-      20 

Carried  up,        •       -       -    £303  Whole  amount,  •       •       -    £498 

These  nine  stands,  it  will  be  perceived,  brought  less  than  one-half 
as  much  as  those  previously  sold;  the  cause,  no  doubt,  was,  they 
were  the  rejected  inside  stands  of  the  upper  market,  and  the  fSftrthest 
from  the  country  and  fish  markets.  Those  which  are  located  the 
nearest  to  these  markets,  and  especially  those  on  the  comers^  are 
always  considered  the  most  valuable. 

Although  these  butchers  had  bought  these  stands,  as  it  were,  in 


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202  ^^^  HARKBTk 

fee,  yet  they  were  nevertheless  liable  any  moment  for  violation  of 
the  established  laws,  ordinances,  rules,  or  regulations ;  with  the  in- 
fliction of  the  penalty,  either  fine,  imprisonment,  or  the  removal  from 
their  stands  were  sore  to  follow.  The  authorities  then  were  more 
honest,  capable,  and  strict  in  the  performance  of  their  duties  than 
those  of  the  present  day,  and  carried  them  out,  not  as  politicians^ 
but  as  sworn  conscientiouB  officers ;  and  the  people  were  more  satis* 
factorily  governed. 

A  few  years  previous  to  this  sale,  the  Proceedings  inform  us,  on 
the  14th  of  November,  1787,  that  William  Everit,  in  the  Fly  Mar- 
ket, butcher,  "  having  totally  neglected  to  attend  his  business  at  his 
stall,"  it  was  resolved  by  the  Board,  ''  that  his  license  be  termi- 
nated."  He  immediately  petitions  to  the  Board,  and  states,  that  he 
''  hfis  been  many  years  past  used  the  trade  of  a  butcher,  and  kept  hia 
stall  in  the  Fly  Market^  and  duly  paid  for  the  privileges  and  immu- 
nities, and  also  paid  the  sum  otj^fteen  pounds  for  these  privileges; 
that  during  the  time  he  was  in  said  business  supported  the  character 
of  an  honest  and  upright  man,  and  a  good  citizen."  He  gives  as  a 
reason  for  neglect  of  business,  was  on  account  of  family  matters,  or 
difficulties,  and  wishes  again  to  be  placed  in  the  possession  of  his 
stand.  But  this  is  denied  him ;  in  fact,  it  placed  him  out  of  busi* 
ness  for  many  years  after. 

In  the  month  of  August,  1796,  "A  complaint  was  made  against 

N S ,  butcher,  in  this  market,  for  affixing  false  Jewish 

seals  on  his  meats,  and  offering  it  for  sale."  He  was  ordered  to 
appear  before  the  Board  at  their  next  meetings,  {10th  and  I5th^) 
when  they  ordered,  *'That  his  license  be  suppressed."  But  after  an- 
other hearing  on  the  26th  September,  "  he  was  restored  to  his  office," 
which,  no  doubt,  was  butchering  for  the  Jews. 

Then  several  butchers  were  represented  as  having  neglected  per* 
sonally  to  attend  at  their  stalls,  and  had  put  others  in  their  places, 
without  permission  of  the  authorities,  "  who  thereupon,  on  the  4th 
day  of  September,  1797,  Ordered,  that  if  any  butcher  shall  neglect 
personally  to  attend  his  business  at  his  standing  in  the  market  for 
the  term  ot/ourteen  days^  his  standing  shall  be  considered  as  vacated, 
and  sold  to  some  other  licensed  butcher,  except  in  cases  of  sickness 
or  other  accidental  causes."  '*  The  Deputy  Clerk  of  the  Fly  Mar* 
ket  was  ordered  to  notify  John  Fincke,  Henry  Springier,  John 
Doughty,  John  Lovell,  Alexander  Peacock,  and  James  Sullivan, 
batchers,  to  appear  at  this  Board  on  Monday  afternoon  next."  On 
that  -day  John  Fincke,  John  Doughty,  John  Lovell,  and  Alexander 
Peacock  attended,  and  assigned  satisfactory  reasons  for  their  ab- 
sence.   Henry  Spingler  also  attended,  and  acknowledged  that  he 


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FLT  MARKET.  208 

had  abandoned  his  gtall,  ''when  it  was  ordered  to  be  sold.''  John 
Triglar,  the  nephew  of  Spingler,  had  worked  and  served  for  him 
many  years,  was  at  this  time  oecnpying  his  stand,  and  wished  to  re- 
tain it^  so  he  petitions  to  the  Board  on  the  18th  September,  (same 
year,)  and  says:  "Having  served  a  regular  apprenticeship  to  the 
butcher's  trade  in  the  said  city,  he  about  twelve  months  ago  obtained 
a  license  to  carry  on  and  exercise  the  trade  of  a  butcher  in  the  said 
eity ;  and  since,  he  has  worked  part  of  his  time  wiA  his  uncle  Henry 
Spingler,  and  part  of  the  time  he  has  sold  meat  on  his  own  account 
at  the  stall  No.  46,  occupied  by  the  said  Henry  Spingler;  that  the 
said  Heniy  Spingler  being  about  to  decline  Hbe  butcher's  business, 
the  petitioner  is  desirous  of  obtaining  a  license  for  the  said  stall, 
for  which  he  is  willing  to  pay  this  Corporation  the  sum  of  fifty 
pounds.  That  the  petitioner  has  it  not  in  his  power  to  pay  a  larger 
sum ;  having  but  lately  b^un  his  business,  and  being  in  low  circum- 
stances. That  the  petitioner's/a^Aer  lost  his  life  at  Fort  Washing- 
Urn  in  the  service  of  his  country ,  and  left  the  petitioner  an  orphan  in 
his  infancy,  dependent  on  his  friends  for  support.  He  therefore 
prays  that  this  Honorable  Board  will  be  pleased  to  take  his  case 
into  consideration;  that  the  sacrifice  of  his  father's  life  in  his  coun- 
try's cause  may  plead  in  the  petitioner's  behalf,  and  that  the  said 
stall  No.  46  may  be  granted  him."  The  Board  however,  demanded 
£70  from  Triglar^  which  he  paid,  and  took  possession. 

For  a  few  hundred  pounds,  Spingler  several  years  previous  had 
bought  some  22  acres  of  land,  which  then  lay  west  of  the  *'  Bow- 
ery Hill,"  now  located  near  Union  Square,  where  he  turned  his  at- 
tention to  raising  garden  truck  and  other  field  products;  part  of 
which  he  conveyed  and  sold  at  this  and  the  Bear  Market.  His  prop- 
erty, by  its  fortunate  location,  as  time  has  proved,  has  constantly 
increased  in  value ;  and  he  has  left  his  heirs  very  wealthy,  (one  of 
whom  now  resides  in  the  splendid  mansion  No.  21  West  14th  Street,) 
while  his  name  yet  lives,  represmted  by  the  "  Spingler  Institute," 
on  Union  Square. 

Previous  to  the  sale  of  these  butchers'  stands,  a  law  had  passed 
which  deprived  the  hucksters  from  selling  fruit  from  their  stands  in 
the  markets,  caused  f^om  the  many  complaints  against  their  engross- 
ing and  storing  all  that  came  to  the  markets  for  a  rise  in  price. 
The  law  was  so  unexpected  and  sudden  that  it  found  them  with  a 
large  surplus  on  hand,  and  not  time  to  dispose  of  it;  and  they  ap- 
pealed to  the  authorities,  on  the  26th  of  November,  in  the  same 
year,  saying  that  "  they  now  have  on  hand  many  of  the  prohibited 
articles,  which  to  them  will  be  a  great  detriment.  Should  your 
Honorable  Board  allow  them  to  sell  as  usual,  they  will  ever  pray/'  - 

Catharine  Montaynie,  Catharine  Spicer,      Arabella  Truce, 


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204  FLY   MABKBT. 

Wilhelmina  Shaffer,     Catharine  Staale,      Blicabeth  Totten, 
Bridget  Nash,  Jane  Wood,  Jane  Gilmore, 

Nancy  Lott,  Mary  Appleby,  Caty  Bnyshe, 

Eliz.  Marks,  Sarah  Conklin,         Barbary  Yanroser, 

Sarah  Barton,  C.  Shearer,  Mary  Baker, 

Mary  Oalp,  Abigal  Doil,  all  of  Fly  Market. 

A  few  of  them,  however,  exposed  their  fruit  for  sale,  and  were 
fined ;  and  in  the  month  of  January  following  some  of  them  appeal- 
ed again,  and  state,  '*  that  the  support  of  our  needy,  destitute  fami- 
lies depends  in  a  great  measure  upon  ihe  privilege  of  exposing  for 
sale  fruit  in  the  public  markets,  under  any  restrictions  your  honors 
may  think  fit  to  impose  in  your  justice ;  and  at  the  same  time,  most 
humbly  pray,  after  due  consideration  of  our  case  and  the  inclemency 
of  the  present  season,  that  you  will  remit  the  fines  at  present  im* 
posed,"  Ac. 

Their  appeals  appear  to  have  been  unnoticed ;  yet  they  did  not  de> 
spair,  but  with  the  assistance  of  some  forty  subscribing  citizens,  thej 
again  made  a  last  trial,  and  *'  trust  with  confidence  in  your  good- 
ness  for  a  repeal  of  the  law  above  alluded  to."  This  was  read  on 
the  6th  of  February  following,  and  rejected. 

In  the  month  of  December  previous,  (1796,)  the  Fish  Market  was 
torn  down,  for  the  purpose  of  stopping  what  proved  to  be  a  very 
destructive  fire,  which  is  noticed  in  the  Minerva  December  9, 1796. 
"About  one  o'clock  this  morning,  a  fire  broke  out  in  one  of  the 
stores  on  Murray's  Wharf,  Coffee-House  Slip.  The  number  of 
buildings  consumed  may  be  from  fifty  to  seventy-— a  whole  block, 
between  the  above  Slip,  Front  Street,  and  the.  Fly  Market.  The 
progress  of  the  fire  was  finally  arrested  by  cutting  down  the  Fish 
Market:' 

So  many  fires  occurring  just  about  this  period,  led  many  of  the 
citizens  to  believe  the  slaves  were  again  conspiring  to  destroy  the 
city,  which  caused  great  excitement,  and  much  preparation  to  guard 
against  such  a  calamity.  The  same  paper,  of  the  14th  inst.  following, 
notices  this.  "  Seriotis  Cause  of  Alarm, — Oitizens  of  New  York,  you 
are  once  more  called  upon  to  attend  to  your  safety.  It  is  no  longer  a 
doubt — ^it  is  a  fact,  that  there  is  a  combination  of  incendiaries  in  this 
city,  aiming  to  wrap  the  whole  of  it  in  flames !  The  house  of  Mr. 
Lewis  Ogden,  in  Pearl  Street,  has  been  twice  set  on  fire — ^the  evidence 
of  malicious  intention  is  indubitable — and  he  has  sent  his  black  man^ 
suspected,  to  prison.  Last  night  an  attempt  was  made  to  set  fire  to 
Mr.  Lindsay's  house  in  Greenwich  Street — the  combustibles  left  for 
the  purpose  are  preserved  as  evidence  of  the  fact.  Another  at- 
tempt, we  learn,  was  made  last  night  ii^  Beekman  Street.    A  bed 


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FLT  MARKET.  205 

was  Bet  on  fire  under  a  child,  and  his  cries  alarmed  his  family. 
Boose)  fellow-dtisens  and  magistrates  I  yonr  lives  and  property  are 
at  stake.    Doable  yonr  night-watch,  and  confine  yonr  aervarUs.^^ 

The  Common  Oonncil,  on  the  16th  December,  passed  resolutions 
offering/i;6  hundred  doUars  reward  for  the  conviction  of  offenders, 
and  recommend  the  "  good  citizens  in  the  several  wards  to  arrange 
themselves  into  companies  or  classes,  to  consist  of  such  numbers  as 
shall  be  necessary  for  the  purpose  of  keeping  such  watch  for  the 
safety  of  the  city." 

A  citizen  says:  '*  The  yellow  fever  produced  not  such  extraordi- 
nary commotion.  The  present  alarm,  as  it  is  contagious,  it  may  be 
called  the  Jire  fever. ^^  The  fever,  however,  soon  died  out;  as  the 
precautions  taken  had  the  desired  effect,  even  if  there  had  been  a 
sign  of  conspiracy. 

The  Fish  Market  was  used  without  a  cover  until  the  24th  of  Feb- 
ruary (1797)  following,  when  the  fishermen  petitioned  "  That,  in 
consequence  of  the  Fish  Market  being  destitute  of  a  cover,  that  it 
is  very  injurious  to  them.  Respecting  the  fish— as  in  a  clear  day 
the  fidi  will  not  survive  but  a  few  minutes,  in  consequence  of  their 
being  exposed  to  the  sun,  which  not  only  materially  affects  the  sale 
of  them,  but  we  are  entirely  exposed  to  the  inclemency  of  the 
season.  They  beg  a  redress  of  a  grievance  of  this  kind,  as  it  will 
affect  the  community  at  large."    (Signed,) 

Joseph  Latham,    Nicholas  Darow,    Elias  Lewis, 
Jasper  Latham,    Thos.  Wilcocks,     Henry  Harris, 
Joseph  Lewis,       John  Potter,         Thomas  Oeoffery. 

On  the  27th  of  March  following,  a  new  market-house  was  ordered 
to  be  built.  "  That  in  rebuilding  the  market,  the  uniformity  al- 
ready established  should  be  continued,  and  that  it  should  be  extend- 
ed from  the  south  side  of  Front  Street  to  the  door  of  the  house  oc- 
cupied by  John  C.  Frecke;"  and  to  be  built  in  the  same  manner  as 
the  upper  market. 

The  next  year  will  always  be  known  as  the  "  dreadful  ydlow 
fever  year,^^  when  we  find  2.086  deaths  registered  in  a  few  short 
months.  It  became  known  to  many  of  the  prominent  physicians  in 
the  year  1791,  when  several  of  our  first  citizens  fell  victims  to  its 
fury;  then  again  in  1795,  when  782  were  carried  off;  and  the  vari- 
ous accounts  given  of  it  were  quite  melancholy. 

One,  given  October  17,  states:  "This  city  has  been  in  a  truly 
melancholy  situation ;  but  the  accounts  of  the  mortality  have  been 
greatly  exaggerated  in  the  country.  Consternation  has  added 
greatly  to  the  distress  of  the  city ;  the  poor  have  suffered  much, 
but  their  wants  have  been  liberally  supplied  from  the  hands  of  be- 


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FLY  MARKET. 

nevolent  donors.  Very  little  business  has  been  done— a  mismn 
caim  has  reigned  through  every  street.  We  are  now  blessed 
with  salubrious  western  gales,  which  is  coneeiyed  to  be  sent  in 
mercy,  and  presages  to  our  hopes  that  the  city  will  be  free  from  the 
epidemic  in  a  little  time.  It  certainly  puts  on  a  less  terrible  hue — 
not  more  than  one  in  twenty  die.  Those  who  have  died  were  the 
greatest  part  new  residents."* 

In  the  years  1799, 1800, 1803,  and  1805,  the  city  was  again  vis- 
ited by  this  dreadful  visitor,  more  or  less ;  but  in  1798  it  came  on 
so  sudden,  that  it  grasped  a  great  many  in  its  fatal  clutches  before 
they  were  hardly  aware  of  its  presence ;  and  so  fatal  was  it  in  the 
month  of  August,  that  it  was  believed  ''  nearly  one*half  of  those 
cases  reported  died ;  and  after  that  period  the  proportion  dimin* 
ished  tp  about  one-third."  What  made  the  matter  worse,  the 
country  people  were  so  alarmed  that  they  would  not  bring  their 
provisions  to  the  city,  although  every  encouragement  was  given 
them.  '*No  fees  were  demanded  from  country  people  bringing 
provisions  to  our  markets."  The  committee  appointed  to  afford 
relief  to  the  indigent  and  distressed  sick,  in  a  communication  to 
the  public,  say:  "They  entreat  their  fellow-citizens  of  the  sur- 
rounding  country  not  to  withhold  from  the  markets  the  usual  sup- 
plies of  poultry  and  amaU  meats,  as  well  as  other  articles  so  essen-^ 
tially  necessary  to  both  sick  and  well,  in  this  city,  in  this  distressed 
season." t  These  appeals  are  answered  from  many  of  the  citizens 
who  had  removed ;  and  others,  living  in  New  Jersey  and  elsewhere, 
sent  large  sums  of  money,  as  well  as  gifts  of  beef,  pork,  mutton,  but- 
ter, cheese,  flour  of  all  kinds,  poultry  and  vegetables,  by  the  wagon 
and  sloop  loads. 

The  markets  in  the  infected  district  were  deserted,  but  not  be- 
fore this  disease  had  marked  its  victims  among  the  butchers,  of 
whom  no  less  than  eleven,  now  known — eight  from  this  and  tluree 
from  the  other  markets — viz.:  John  Barr,  James  Place,  James 
Young,  William  Mooney,  Simmons  Potter,  Adam  Van  der  Bergh, 
William  Everit,  Jun'r,  and  George  Messerve,  of  the  Fly;  and 
William  Blank,  Gilbert  Enapp,  Edward  King,  from  the  others. 

In  briefly  noticing  the  death  of  John  Barr,  the  occupant  of  No. 
19,  it  is  also  a  duty,  and  withal  a  pleasure,  to  notice  the  occupant  of 
No.  13,  Matthew  Vogel,  for  his  fearless  acts  of  humanity  displayed 
by  him  in  that  dreadful  season,  when  many  of  its  first  victims  were 
almost  deserted  or  left  with  those  who  could  not  assist  them. 

Mr.  Yogel  at  that  time  was  a  young  as  well  as  strictly  a  Chris- 
tian man,  without  a  particle  of  the  braggart  or  of  personal  fear,  as 
«  N.  Y.  Joaroal,  &o.  f  I>aily  AdvM'tiBer,  Sept  28, 179& 


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PLY   MARKET.  207 

he  went  wherever  he  could  hear  of  a  case  of  this  fearful  disease  that 
needed  assistance,  whether  rich  or  poor ;  and  I  am  told  he  was  the 
means  of  assisting  many,  or  emoUhing  the  piBowa  of  the  aflSicted  and 
dying  sufferers. 

Tet  living,  (1858,)  and  nearly  nineiy  years  of  age^  is  the  active,  in- 
telligent widow  of  one  of  the  victims  of  1798|  who  told  me  the  fol- 
lowing facts.  She  said  her  husband,  John  Barr,  was  a  butcher  in 
the  *'Ohi  Fly  Market,"  where  he  took  the  yellow  fever.  He  came 
home  to  his  residence,  then  at  the  southeast  comer  of  the  Bowery 
Lane  and  Grand  Street,  and  with  the  assistance  of  his  wife,  dis- 
mounted from  his  horse — ^no  carts  being  allowed  after  a  certain  time 
around  the  markets — ^when  his  relatives  and  friends  deserted  him 
all,  except  his  affectionate  wi£9 — and  she  for  two  days  and  nights 
was  at  the  bedside,  alone  with  her,  at  times,  deranged  husband;  and 
when  in  his  senses,  his  wishes  were,  if  he  died — that  he  might  not 
be  taken  by  Parker^  in  his  horrid  dead-cart^  to  "  Potter's  Field." 
His  faithful  wife  promised  he  diould  not  if  she  lived.  The  humane 
Vogel  heard  of  his  sickness  through  the  doctor,  {UfiderhtU^  she 
thought  he  was  a  doctor,)  and  hurried  there  to  find  that  the  husband 
was  speechless  and  the  wife  worn  out  He  stayed  and  done  all 
that  man  could  do,  but  the  poor  distracted  wife  knew  he  could  not 
live,  and  she  also  knew  that  no  other  help  could  be  obtained;  she 
prepared  his  mnding^heet^  that  he  might  have  the  Christian  burial 
she  had  promised  him. 

He  died,  and  Vogel,  having  previously  procured  a  coffin,  laid  him 
out;  then,  before  the  expected  deadrcart  came  along  for  the  body, 
he  harnessed  the  dead  man's  favorite  horse  before  his  butcher-cart, 
to  be  at  last  used  as  his  hearse,  and  in  this  he  conveyed  the  body, 
followed  by  one^  the  chief  mourner,  to  the  family  burial-ground  in 
the  Dutch  Reformed  church-yard,  at  the  corner  of  Eldridge  and 
Houston  Streets,  where  he  wished  it  to  lie.  There  the  noble-hearted 
Vogel  dug  the  grave,  and  the  faithful  wife  redeemed  the  last  prom- 
ise made  to  her  once  affectionate  and  her  only  husband.* 

The  action  of  the  "  Board  of  Health,"  who  bestowed  on  Mr.  Vogel 
a  ''vote  of  thanks"  for  his  many  fearless  acts  of  humanity,  which 
soon  after  became  generally  known,  brought  him  much  trade ;  but 
his  generous  nature,  which  hung  to  him  through  life,  caused  many 
of  the  deserving  as  well  as  the  undeserving  to  visit  him,  and  they 
went  away  not  empty  handed.  Another  generation,  and  Unde  Mat 
(as  he  was  familiarly  called)  found  himself  poorer  only  in  purse, 
and  his  heroic  services  almost  forgotten,  save  a  few  friends  who 
were  with  hkn  in  that  deadly  season.  In  the  year  1830,  he  petition- 
•  A  aketcb  of  Mn.  Esir  wm  be  ftwod  In  Union  Ifatkat. 


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208  PL^   MARKET. 

ed  for  a  small  oflBce,  bnt  as  9l  political  quali/loation  had  then  begun 
to  show  its  demon  head,  he  conld  not  succeed.  His  few  friends 
among  the  leading  men  then  came  forth,  and  among  their  acts  placed 
the  following  before  the  Board  on  the  13th  of  February:  "  I  certify 
that  I  have  been  personally  acquainted  for  many  years  with  Mr. 
Matthew  Yogle,  and  understanding  that  he  is  an  applicant  to  the 
Common  Council  for  the  appointment  of  Ward  Street  Inspector^  I 
recommend  him  as  worthy,  and  as  an  applicant  having  strong  claims 
to  their  regard.  Mr.  Yogle  in  the  gloomy  year  of  1798  did  great 
service  to  our  city  during  the  mortality  occasioned  by  the  Yellow 
Fever — ^he  volunteered  his  services  to  aid  the  sick  and  distressed 
among  our  citizens,  which  services  he  most  humanely  and  perse- 
veringly  discharged  at  the  hazard  of  his  life — and  in  a  manner  so 
much  to  his  credit  and  our  satisfaction,  that  the  Board  of  Healthy 
of  which  I  then  had  the  honor  to  be  a  member,  also  an  Aldermani 
deemed  it  proper  to  bestow  on  Mr.  Yogle  a  vote  (f  thanks. 

"  Gabbibl  Forman,  Chairman  of  Board  (f  Health. 

"New  York,  13th  of  February,  1830." 

We,  the  subjoined  signers,  are  all  acquainted  with  the  facts  as 
above  set  forth,  and  unite  in  the  petition  and  recommendation  of  Mr. 
Yogle. 

Samuel  Stilwell,         Edward  Sturman,      John  Mann, 
James  Donaldson,      John  B.  Smith,  George  Taylor,  Jr., 

Peter  Parks. 

"Uncle  Mat"  did  not  receive  this  appointment;  as  the  position  of 
a  "  Ward  Street  Inspector  "  would  not  suit  an  honest  man — so  says 
the  politician — so  says,  not  the  people;  the  politician  rules  and  rtUnSf 
and  the  people  bear  their  burdensome  load  like  heroes.  This  office 
had  too  many  votes,  working  with  the  broom,  and  that  broom  on 
election  day  was  wonderfully  useful  in  sweeping  in  enough  illegiti- 
mate votes  in  the  ballot-box  to  keep  some  other  party,  who  likely 
were  still  more  dishonest,  out.  Mr.  Yogel,  however,  through  the  as- 
sistance of  Colonel  Appleby,  George  Pessinger,  and  many  more  old 
friends,  succeeded  in  obtaining  a  clerkship  in  the  Essex,  Monroe, 
and  Gouvemeur  Markets,  where  he  honestly  and  faithfully  dis- 
charged the  duties  until  his  death,  which  occurred  in  1862. 

For  another  incident  of  the  fever  of  '98  I  am  indebted  to  Dr.  An* 
derson,  who  was  a  very  great  sufferer  by  the  loss  of  many  dear  rela- 
tives at  this  period.  He  told  me,  that "  in  the  month  of  September, 
he  first  lost  his  brother  by  the  fever;  a  few  days  after  his  father, 
then  living  in  Wall  Street,  was  attacked,  and  soon  after  died;  he 
then  removed  his  mother  to  his  residence  in  Liberty«6treet,  when 
she  was  taken  down  with  it,  and,  notwithstanding  the  careful  nurs- 
ing of  himself  and  wife,  she  too  died.    By  this  time  his  wife,  who 


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FLY   MARKET.  209 

had  been  ill  of  consumption,  died  also,  no  donbt  hastened  from  ex- 
cessiye  duties  and  excitement;  then  her  sister,  (his  sister-in-law,) 
having  performed  her  duty  with  his  sick  mother,  and  her  sister, 
caught  the  fatal  fever,  and  also  died."  While  her  body  was  yet 
lying  in  the  house.  Dr.  Anderson,  who  had  now  become  so  mnch 
overcome  by  these  afl3ictions  that  he  gave  up,  supposing  that  all  were 
gone,  his  turn  would  come  next.  He  proceeded  up  to  the  garret  of 
his  house,  when  he  perceived  a  piece  of  rag  carpet  lay  stretched  on 
the  floor,  threw  himself  upon  it,  where  exhausted  nature  caused  him 
to  sleep. 

In  that  situation  John  Ferguson,  his  friend,  found  him,  who  had 
come  to  visit  and  assist  him  with  the  sick;  but  finding  the  rooms  de- 
serted, except  the  deceased,  he  proceeded  up  to  the  garret,  where 
he  remained  after  finding  him.  When  Anderson  awoke,  says  Fer- 
guson to  him :  "  Sandy ^  what  ts  Ood  Almighty  going  to  do  with  you 
next?^*  These  words  of  pity  and  sorrow  from  a  "friend  in  need'* 
encouraged  and  renewed  his  before  drooping  spirits,  and  again  he 
went  forth  to  the  world. 

John  Ferguson  was  then  a  law  student,  and  having  been  disap- 
pointed in  love,  became  reckless  of  his  life,  and  everywhere,  at  all 
times  of  day  and  night,  he  was  found  assisting  the  sick  or  dying  of 
this  fatal  fever.  His  freak  of  recklessness,  however,  in  the  end 
proved  to  be  a  humane  one;  and  several  years  after  he  became  the 
Mayor  of  the  City  of  New  York. 

A  Mr.  Jacob  Underhill,  a  benevolent  gentleman  from  up  the 
North  River,  came  to  the  city  at  this  period  on  purpose  to  assist 
the  victims  of  this  disease,  and  faithfully  he  devoted  his  time  and 
purse  in  doing  so.  His  principal  medicine,  says  Dr.  Anderson,  was 
plain  Sage  Tea,  and,  it  was  said,  he  cured  many  with  it. 

Dr.  Alexander  Anderson,  referred  to  above,  is  now  about  85  years 
old,  and  daily  he  may  be  found  engaged  in  an  art  of  which  he  may 
properly  claim  to  be  the  father  in  the  United  States;  that  is,  wood 
engraving.  In  his  youth  he  studied  medicine,  and  received  his  de- 
gree from  Columbia  College,  but  following  the  bent  of  his  taste  for 
the  arts,  he  relinquished  the  study  of  medicine  and  engaged  in  that 
of  engraving.  Years  after,  he  found  some  of  Bewick's  wood  en- 
gravings on  natural  history,  when  he  became  attracted  by  their  gen- 
eral effect,  and  without  instructions  he  adopted  this  branch,  and  he 
has  followed  it  to  the  present  day. 

We  again  look  back  into  that  dreadful  year  1798,  and  find 

that  the  widows  of  several  of  these  deceased  butchers  petition  to  be 

allowed  the  use  of  their  stands;  others,  again,  whose  stands  had 

been  purchased  from  the  Corporation,  wished  to  sell  them.    The 

Vol.  L— 14 


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210  FLY   MARKET, 

first  is  from  Catharine,  the  widow  of  George  Messerve,  on  the  29th 
of  October,  same  year,  when  she  obtains  permission  *'  to  continue  in 
the  occupation  of  the  standing  in  the  Fly  Market  of  her  late  hus- 
band"— "  for  one  year,  or  during  the  pleasure  of  the  Board."  The 
widow  of  Adam  Van  der  Bergh,  and  Sarah,  the  widow  of  William 
Everitt,  JunV,  were  *'  indulged  with  the  little  (like  ?)  priviledge  as 
that  granted  to  Catharine  Messerve." 

Joseph  Outen  Bogert  petitions  for  leave  to  purchase  of  the  widow 
of  James  Young,  deceased,  stand  No.  66,  which  was  granted.  She 
sold  it  to  Bogert  for  $1,700;  and  when  she  accompanied  him  to  the 
Mayor's  office,  to  procure  a  license,  "  the  Mayor  told  the  widow 
that  she  got  more  than  the  husband  gave  for  it" — "and  instantly 
recommended  that  it  would  be  proper  to  take  less."  To  this  Mrs. 
Young  replied,  that  "  the  stall  was  her  own,  and  that,  as  she  was 
left  with  three  children,  she  must  make  the  most  of  it,"  No  doubt 
the  trade  to  it  was  considered  in  the  sale. 

James  Campbell  also  petitions  for  the  stand  of  Simmons  Potter^ 
No.  19,  which  formerly  belonged  to  John  Barr,  which  was  granted, 
on  condition  that  "  he  pay  off  the  note,  with  the  interest,  due  from 
Potter,"  to  the  Corporation.  In  this  manner  the  Corporation  col* 
lected  all  moneys  due  to  them,  whether  of  the  principal,  interest,  or 
rent.  If  one  failed  to  pay  either  or  all  of  these,  it  was  charged  to 
the  next  occupant. 

The  butchers,  after  deserting  the  markets  in  consequence  of  the 
fever,  sold  meats  at  their  houses  or  other  places ;  and  as  they  were 
liable  to  the  city  for  a  stated  sum  (market  fees)  on  each  head  of 
stock  they  sold,  after  their  return  to  the  markets,  they  were  called 
on  to  render  an  account  on  oath  of  such  market  fees ;  and  they  not 
doing  so  immediately,  on  the  13th  of  November  of  the  same  year, 
"  the  butchers  of  the  Fly  and  Catharine  Slip  Markets  respectively 
do,  on  or  before  twelve  o'clock  on  Monday  next,  of  the  fees  due 
from  the  30th  of  July  last  to  the  27th  of  October  last,  inclusive; 
and  also  that  they  do  by  that  day  pay  the  amount  of  those  fees." 

In  the  month  of  June,  1800,  some  nine  of  the  butchers  in  this 
market  petitioned  for  the  "  Manhattan  Water"  (which  was  just  in- 
troduced through  several  of  the  streets)  in  this  market,  to  make 
pickle  and  clean  the  market,  and  wish  to  bring  it  in  at  their  own 
expense ;  which  was  granted  to  them. 

At  this  period  there  were  several  petitions  and  memorials  before 
the  Board,  showing  the  crowded  state  of  this  market;  and  another 
against  a  butcher  here,  who  neglected  his  business  in  the  market  to 
forestall  cattle.  This  is  dated  June  2d,  1801,  and  says:  "That 
Henry  Astor,  and  certain  others,  who  are  also  licensed  butchers,  leav- 


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FLY   MARKET.  211 

ing  the  care  of  their  stalls  and  the  selling  of  their  meats  to  journey- 
men, and  others  who  are  not  licensed  butchers,  are  in  the  constant 
practice  of  forestalling  the  market,  by  riding  into  the  country  to 
meet  the  droves  of  cattle  coming  to  the  New  York  markets,  and 
purchasing  cattle  for  other  stalls  besides  his  own;  and  does  not 
personally  attend  to  any  stall.  That  it  is  also  become  very  custom- 
ary for  drovers  of  cattle  from  the  country,  after  selling  their  own 
cattle,  to  purchase  other  droves,  and  sell  them  out  singly  at  an  ad- 
vanced price,  thereby  forestalling  the  market.  That  your  memo- 
rialists, by  their  regular  and  constant  attendance  at  their  stalls, 
have  it  not  in  their  power  to  counteract  these  pernicious  practices, 
but  are  thereby  prevented  from  purchasing  cattle  upon  so  good 
terms  as  they  otherwise  could,  and  are  often  obliged  to  purchase 
from  the  said  forestallers  at  an  advanced  price.  That  in  conse- 
quence thereof,  the  price  of  butchers'  meat  is  very  considerably  en- 
hanced, to  the  great  detriment  of  the  city."  They  wish  the  Board 
to  adopt  '^  such  rules,  regulations,  and  active  measures  as  they 
shall  think  fit  and  expedient,  to  restrain  the  said  Henry  Astor,  and 
all  others,  from  forestalling  the  markets  in  manner  aforesaid." 
This  was  signed  by  several  of  the  principal  butchers  in  several  of 
the  markets,  as  follows: 

Wm.  Wright,        William  Post,        David  Marsh, 
Edward  Patten,    Alex'r  Peacock,     John  Norman, 
Philip  Fink,  Alex'r  Fink,  and  Joseph  0.  Bogart. 

At  this  period  the  market  is  represented  as  being  much  crowded, 
by  several  citizens  and  some  of  the  butchers,  who  state :  "  From 
the  extreme  narrowness  of  the  said  market,  and  from  the  present 
crowded  and  unequal  distribution  of  the  vacancies  between  the 
stalls,  they  are  impeded  in  the  prosecution  of  their  business,  and 
the  citizens  frequenting  the  said  market  greatly  incommoded ;  inso- 
much that,  in  full  market-day,  it  is  difficult  to  pass  and  repass." 

This  extract  would  lead  us  to  supine  that  this  market,  at  that 
period,  was  near  its  height  of  prosperity ;  and  no  doubt  it  was,  as, 
two  years  after,  every  stand  and  space  appears  to  have  been  occu- 
pied, and  all  doing  well.  Seventy-two  butchers*'  stands  were  occu- 
pied by  the  following  persons: 

No.  1.  John  Pessinger.  8.  John  Deavenport. 

2.  John  Hilliker.  9.  George  Mason. 

S.  John  Fitzgerald.  10.  Nicholas  Stall,  (Stad.) 

4.  John  Basley,  (Baisley.)  11.  George  Rierson,(J3^er«oii.) 

5.  Thomas  Hall.  12.  John  Philips. 

6.  William  Kline.  13.  Mathew  Vogal,  (Fogd.) 

7.  James  Wilt.  14.  Thomas  Gibbons. 


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212                                          FLY 

MARKET. 

No.  16.  Jacob  Nichols. 

44.  John  Triglar. 

16.  George  R.  Beck. 

45.  Daniel  Enslej. 

17.  James  Redding. 

46.  John  Fink. 

18.  William  Dick. 

47.  Edward  Patten. 

19.  William  Moonej. 

48.  Alexander  Peacock. 

20.  John  K.  Floor. 

49.  John  Lovell,  Jon'r. 

21.  Andrew  Ross. 

60.  John  Doughty. 

22.  John  Norman. 

61.  John  Lovell,  SenV. 

23.  Abner  Curtis. 

62.  James  Oarr. 

24.  Francis  Arden. 

58.  Michael  Yarian. 

25.  Scale  &  Passage. 

64.  Richard  Yarian. 

26.  Charles  Bird. 

55.  John  Garrison. 

27.  William  Wright. 

56.  Christian  Stamler. 

28.  Joseph  Graff. 

67.  Henry  Astor. 

29.  Isaac  Yarian. 

58.  William  Messerve. 

80.  Eliphalet  Wheeler. 

59.  John  Raynor. 

81.  Sam'I  Ackerman. 

60.  James  Marsh. 

82.  Andrew  Van  Densen. 

61.  Cornelius  Schuyler. 

88.  John  Whitehand. 

62.  John  Pessinger,  Jun'r. 

84.  John  Roper,  or  Raper. 

68.  William  Everitt. 

85.  John  B.  Smith. 

64.  Henry  Lovell. 

86.  John  Williams. 

65.  Benjamin  Cornell. 

87.  David  Mann. 

66.  Joseph  0.  Bogart 

88.  David  Marsh. 

67.  Whitehead  Cornell. 

89.  Stephen  Hilliker. 

68.  George  G.  Messerve. 

40.  John  Tier. 

69.  Daniel  Winship. 

41.  William  Post. 

70.  John  Pell. 

42.  Isaac  Beyea. 

71.  David  Seaman. 

43.  George  Thompson. 

72.  George  Manolt. 

Of  all  this  large  number,  1  know  of  but  two  who  are  yet  in  the 
land  of  the  living,  (July,  1859:)  one  the  occupant,  at  that  period, 
of  No.  30,  Eliphalet  Wheeler ;  and  the  other,  of  No.  56,  Christian 
Stamler.  Both  have  long  and  successfully  battled  with  the  world, 
although  their  long  road  of  life  has  not  been  traveled  together. 

Eliphalet  Wheeler  is  now  almost  eighty  years  of  age,  enjoying 
good  health,  both  in  body  and  mind.  When  a  boy  of  nine  years 
old,  he  began  by  earning  a  few  shillings  a  week  from  working  in 
Lorillard's  Tobacconist;  at  the  age  of  sixteen  he  was  apprenticed 
with  John  Norman,  a  butcher  in  this  market,  where  his  perquisites 
soon  placed  a  few  dollars  in  his  pockets.  About  this  period,  it  was 
a  great  habit  for  the  apprentice  boy^,  and  of  course  young  men,  to 
meet  together  certain  evenings  at  Mrs.  F's  in  Elizabeth  Street,  be- 
low Bayard's  Lane,  (Broome  Street,)  where  she  kept  quite  an  at* 


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FLY  MARKET.  218 

tractive  shop,  dealing  out  mead,  cakes,  etc.,  and  where  card-playing 
and  other  games  of  chance  were  performed.  Yonng  Wheeler  was 
induced  to  visit  this  place  one  evening,  and  before  he  left,  he  had 
jast  four  shillings  less  than  when  he  entered.  The  loss  was  not  so 
mnch,  but  the  idea  of  losing  it  by  gambling  was  more  than  his  sen- 
sitive mind  could  bear.  It  preyed  on  him  so  much,  that  on  his  way 
home  late  in  the  night,  he  had  to  cross  near  the  old  family  vault  of 
Alderman  Bayard,  which  was  then  looked  upon  as  a  sacred  spot  by 
many  of  the  rising  generation.  When  he  came  to  it  he  stopped, 
and  on  bended  knee  made  a  vow,  "  that  he  would  never  again,  in 
any  manner,  engage  in  'games  of  chance ;'  and  further,  to  devote  his 
whole  life  and  energies  to  serve  the  Lord."  From  that  hour  his 
earnings  were  placed  in  what  is  called  a  "money-box,"  and  he  con- 
tinued to  thrive:  purchased  this  stand  {No.  30)  in  1802;  and  in 
1822  he  purchased  No.  2  in  Fulton  Market,  from  which  he  retired 
more  than  twenty  years  ago,  with  abundance  of  this  world's  goods; 
and  he  has  lived  such  a  life  as  conformed  to  the  vow  made  upon 
the  old  "Bayard  Vault." 

Christian  Stamler  is  now  about  eighty  years  old,  and  quite  help- 
less. His  life  has  been  devoted  to  one  of  money  getting,  and  he  has 
succeeded.  He  was  ever  very  eccentric,  both  in  looks  and  conver- 
sation. Many  anecdotes  are  told  of  him ;  one  of  which  appears 
quite  suitable  to  his  general  character.  He  happened  on  board  of 
a  sloop  one  day,  looking  for  stock;  after  finding  some  to  suit  and 
agreeing  about  the  price,  the  captain  not  knowing  him,  and  judging 
from  his  appearance  that  he  could  not  raise  five  dollars,  asked  him 
for  a  retainer.  "  Chris"  was  somewhat  nettled,  but  very  coolly  took 
out  a  small  dirty  roll  from  a  corner  of  his  old  vest  pocket,  opened 
it  out,  and  handed  the  captain  a  one-thousand  dollar  biU,  at  the  same 
time  showing  many  others;  told  the  captain  to  take  out  the  amount 
demanded.  The  captain  was  nonplused,  but  some  butchers  came 
up— gave  the  captain  his  name,  which  was  generally  known  to  him, 
as  well  as  to  all  the  dealers  in  stock — ^but  he  said,  "  He  did  not  ex- 
pect to  find  a  man  of  his  reputed  wealth  in  such  shocking  bad 
clothes." 

John  Fink,  noticed  as  the  occupant  of  No.  46  in  this  market,  had 
many  years  previous  been  a  keeper  of  an  old  public-house,  known 
as  the  "Butchers'  Arms,"  on  the  comer  of  the  Bowery  and  Bayard 
Street,  where  many  young  butchers  and  others  almost  daily  con- 
gregated ;  and  from  tins  latter  fact  no  doubt  was  the  cause  of  Mr. 
Fink  becoming  a  prominent  character  in  the  once  famous  "Miranda 
Expedition,"  which  originated  in  this  city  in  the  year  1806. 

This  expedition  was  started  by  a  native  of  Caraccas,  South  Amer- 


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214  PLY  KARKBT. 

ica,  known  as  General  Francisco  De  Miranda,  who  appears  to  have 
had  some  political  difficulty  with  his  government,  and  who  had 
been  obliged  to  leave  his  country,  and  to  seek  safety  in  France, 
where  he  had  engaged  in  her  army,  and  soon  after  received  the 
rank  of  General.  Some  dissatisfaction  about  promotion  had  in- 
duced him  to  leave  that  country  also:  and  the  year  1805  found 
him  in  the  City  of  New  York,  where  he  became  acquainted,  through 
letters  of  introduction,  to  several  prominent  citizens.  Among  these 
were  Oolonel  William  Smith,  Samuel  G.  Ogden,  Colonel  Armstrong, 
and  Captain  Thomas  Lewis,  the  latter  belonging  to  an  armed  trader, 
called  the  "  LeaiiderJ*  It  appeared  soon  after  Colonel  Smith  be- 
came a  frequent  visitor  at  Fink's  public-house,  which  was  a  sort  of 
head-quarters  for  the  young  butchers  after  the  market  hours ;  and 
after  a  short  period,  he  induced  Mr.  Fink  to  engage  in  the  enroll- 
ment of  men,  as  was  said, ''  for  the  service  of  the  United  States/'  to 
form  a  Cavalry  Company,  by  the  name  of  "  President's  Guards," 
who:3e  principal  duty  was  to  guard  the  President  while  traveling, 
and  at  other  times  to  guard  the  mail  at  New  Orleans,  at  which  place 
they  were  to  immediately  proceed.  The  inducements  held  out  were, 
that  they  were  to  receive  one  month's  pay  of  $15  in  advance  as 
bounty  money,  besides  all  the  necessary  clothing  and  rations,  which 
were  to  be  supplied  gratuitously. 

Mr.  Fink's  influence  being  very  considerable,  he  soon  enrolled 
above  tliirty  persons,  most  of  them  butchers,  and  several  of  them 
married  men ;  and  there  is  no  doubt  that  he  was  deceived  in  the 
real  character  of  the  expedition,  because  he  had  engaged  himself  to 
go,  with  many  of  his  intimate  friends ;  but  when  they  saw  the  secret 
and  unusual  manner  of  the  ships  leaving  the  harbor,  and  of  embark- 
ing the  troops,  he  refused  to  proceed,  and  he  also  induced  many  of 
those  whom  he  had  induced  to  join  also  to  refuse ;  although  several 
of  them,  on  the  assurance  of  several  of  the  officers  *'  that  they  should 
not  be  deceived,  with  also  some  additional  advance  paid,"  resolved 
to  go. 

At  this  late  period  but  few  are  left  who  can  recognize  many  of 
those  who  were  butchers  who  went  on  that  expedition ;  but  I  have 
beon  able  to  present  the  following :  John  Parsells,  David  Vinton, 
John  Edsall,  Alexander  Bahanan,  Matthew  Bahanan,  Benjamin 
Davis,  Richard  Piatt,  John  Burk,  Henry  Sperry,  and  others. 

After  the  ship  **  Leander  "  was  ladened  with  a  large  quantity  of  war 
materials,  and  the  Custom-House  Officers  had  been  deceived  respect- 
ing her  cargo  and  destination,  she  dropped  down  to  Staten  Island, 
where  she  received  General  Miranda  and  the  enrolled  troops  on 
board;  and  she  put  to  sea  on  the  3d  day  of  February,  1806,  ar- 


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PLY   MA&KET.  215 

riving  at  Jaomel  in  due  time.  Here  she  remained  some  six  weeks 
giving  those  whom  *'  Miranda"  intended  to  attack  time  enough  to 
learn  all  his  intentions,  and  the  necessary  preparations  to  receive 
him.  Two  other  vessels  were  engaged  by  Miranda  at  Jacmel,  when 
troops  and  ammunition  were  placed  on  board,  and  all  three  pro- 
ceeded to  the  Island  of  Buen-iire,  and  after  many  difficulties  ar- 
rived off  that  coast,  where  soon  after  they  were  attacked  by  two 
Spanish  vessels,  and  the  two  vessels  of  Miranda  were  taken,  although 
he  escaped  in  the ''  Leander." 

Some  60  prisoners  were  taken  to  Porto  Cavello,  where  they  were 
imprisoned,  and  soon  after  tried  for  piracy,  when  all  the  officers 
were  ordered  to  be  hung,  and  afterwards  to  have  their  heads  cut  off; 
the  others  were  ordered  to  be  imprisoned  ten  years  at  labor,  part 
at  Omoa  and  the  other  part  at  Porto  Rico,  where  many  of  them 
died  of  wounds  and  sickness,  and  those  who  remained  suffered  al- 
most death.  Some  few  were  pardoned,  but  many  of  them  remained 
in  prison  for  years,  although  many  efforts  were  made  to  secure  the 
interposition  of  our  Government;  to  secure  which,  in  their  behalf, 
some  twenty  of  them  stated  in  a  memorial:  "That  we,  your  me- 
morialists, are  natives  of  the  United  States  of  America,  and  for  the 
most  part  of  the  City  of  New  York,  and  are  part  of  a  number  of 
men  of  the  same  description  who  were  brought  from  New  York  in 
February  last,  in  the  ship  Leander,  Thomas  Lewis,  commander,  un- 
der circumstances  of  treachery  and  imposition,  which  your  memorial- 
ists will  proceed  to  explain :  Samuel  G.  Ogden  has  been  known  for 
some  time  as  owner  of  the  ship  Leander,  which  vessel  had  for  some 
lime  been  employed  by  him  in  a  forced  trade,  for  which  purpose  she 
had  been  heavily  armed ;  consequently,  there  was  less  danger  of  her 
warlike  equipments  awakening  suspicion  on  the  part  of  the  public, 
or  in  the  breasts  of  your  memorialists,  of  any  illegal  undertaking. 
Of  the  whole  number  of  your  memorialists,  some  were  attached  to 
the  vessel,  some  were  employed  for  military  service,  and  others  for 
the  exercise  of  their  ordinary  occupation  and  trade.  Those  of  the 
first  description  were  shipped  in  the  usual  manner,  on  a  voyage  to 
Jacnid  and  back  to  New  York ;  the  rest  were  engaged  by  Colonel 
William  Smith,  3fr,  John  Fink,  Colonel  William  Armstrong,  and 
Mr.  Daniel  R.  Durning,  to  proceed  to  New  Orleans,  and  other  places 
not  mentioned,  under  the  command  of  Mr.  Armstrong  and  Mr.  Dur- 
ning, who,  as  was  falsely  and  shamefully  mentioned,  had  been  appoint- 
ed by  Government  to  carry  thither  a  certain  number  of  men  as  a 
guard  to  the  mail.  Your  memorialists  predicate  their  right  to  claim 
the  interference  of  Government  in  their  behalf  upon  the  original 
innocence  of  their  intentions  and  the  veracity  of  the  statement  they 


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216  FLY   MARKET. 

have  offered.  To  establish  these  to  your  satisfaction,  they  beg  that 
the  persons  hereinafter  mentioned,  who  are  informed  of  the  intrigue 
that  was  exercised  by  Colonel  Smith  and  others,  his  colleagues,  may 
be  appealed  to,  viz. :  Mr.  Daniel  Kemper,  whose  son  was  executed ; 
Colonel  Marrinus  Willet;  Mr.  Brinkerhoof,  tavern-keeper;  William 
Butledge,  ship-joyner ;  Samuel  Winship  and  Francis  White,  butch- 
ers, all  of  New  York.  And  if  it  shall  appear  by  the  testimony  of 
these  persons  that  the  account  be  worthy  of  credit,  they  will  be  en- 
titled to  their  country's  protection  and  support.''  This  was  dated 
"Carthagena,  December  30,  1806." 

We  find  also  from  a  petition  of  John  Parcell's,  dated  July  25, 
1812,  he  says:  "About  eight  years  have  elapsed  since  the  expira- 
tion of  his  apprenticeship,  (with  John  Pell,)  three  years  and  four 
mordJiS  qf  wkich  time  he  was  confined  in  prison  in  South  America  in 
irons,  on  account  cf  being  on  board  of  a  vessd  under  the  command  of 
Miranda^^  Ac.  Several  others  of  these  butchers,  after  enduring  al- 
most every  hardship  and  suffering,  came  back  broken  down  in  spirit 
and  constitution,  at  last  to  lay  their  bones  with  their  kindred. 

The  principal  portion  of  the  supplies  which  at  this  period  (1802) 
furnished  the  markets  still  came  to  the  city  by  water,  either  in  small 
boats  or  across  the  ferries,  and  but  few  were  brought  in  wagons  or 
carts,  except  by  those  who  lived  a  few  miles  from  the  city  on  New 
York  Island.  Occasionally  the  markets  were  poorly  supplied, 
caused  either  from  certain  tides,  storms,  Ac,  which  gave  opportuni- 
ties for  the  now  numerous  forestallers  to  take^  advantage  of  these 
circumstances,  by  advancing  the  prices.  The  prices  of  certain  arti- 
cles in  favorable  seasons  were  usually  about  the  same  in  certain 
months,  but  the  winter  and  spring  months  they  all  ranged  higher. 
This,  however,  was  expected ;  but  the  forestallers  had  for  several 
years  past  exceeded  this  expectation,  and  bought  up  all  they  could 
before  its  arrival  at  the  markets,  by  which  means  they  controlled 
the  markets,  and  gave  much  dissatisfaction  and  cause  of  complaint. 
This  brought  forth  a  report  in  the  month  of  February,  1803,  from  a 
Committee  consisting  of  Aldermen  John  Oothout  and  Philip  Brasher, 
who  state:  '^Tha-t  it  has  hitherto  been  the  policy  of  this  Board  to 
encourage  a  resort  of  country  people  bringing  provisions  to  the  mar- 
kets in  this  city  by  land  carriages ;  the  Committee  are  persuaded 
that  this  policy  has  been  attended  with  the  most  beneficial  effects, 
as  supplies  in  this  way  not  only  tend  to  reduce  the  price  of  pro- 
visions, but  frequently  defeat  the  injurious  practice  of  forestallers; 
the  Committee  therefore  recommend  that  no  market  fees  whatever 
be  demanded  from  persons  bringing  into  this  city  any  provisions  in 
wagons,  carts,  or  sleds,  provided  the  same  are  vended  out  of  such 


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FLY   MARKET.  217 

'wagons,  carts,  or  sleds  in  which  the  same  maj  be  brought  to  this 
city.  The  laws  against  forestallers  have  been  for  a  great  length  of 
time  but  partially  executed,  if  not  totally  neglected,  whereby  the 
prices  of  provisions  are  much  enhanced,  and  the  inhabitants  gener* 
ally,  but  more  especially  the  poor  thereof,  feel  its  baneful  effects. 
The  Committee  are  of  opinion  that  the  clerks  of  the  different  markets 
ought  to  be  instructed  from  time  to  time  by  the  Mayor  of  this  city 
*  to  be  vigilant  in  the  execution  of  their  duty  in  this  particular.' '' 
They  further  state,  they  "  have  taken  a  survey  of  the  Ply  Market, 
^ith  a  view  to  recommend  additional  shelter  from  the  rain  and  sun 
to  be  provided  for  women  and  others  who  dispose  of  vegetables; 
find  it  impracticable,  owing  to  the  space  being  very  narrow  between 
the  eves  of  the  market  and  the  opposite  houses ;  any  further  exten- 
Bion  would  prove  destructive  in  case  of  fire.  The  Committee,  how- 
ever, recommend  that  the  Mayor  direct  the  Clerk  of  the  Market  to 
make  a  more  convenient  disposition  of  the  several  stands,  by  obliging 
many  green-women  who  occupy  the  lower  parts  of  the  Fly  Market 
to  remove  nearer  Pearl  Street;  by  this  arrangement,  they  would 
have  more  room,  and  the  country  people  from  Long  Island  better 
accommodated." 

In  the  month  of  April  of  this  year,  Mr.  Grant  Thorbum  observed 
a  man,  for  the  first  time,  selling  flower-plants  in  this  market.  He 
says:  ''As  I  carelessly  passed  along,  I  took  a  leaf,  and  rubbing  it 
between  my  fingers  and  thumb,  asked  him  what  was  the  name  of  it? 
He  answered,  *A  rose  geranium.^  I  looked  a  few  minutes  at  the 
plant,  thought  it  had  a  pleasant  smell,  and  thought  it  would  look 
well  if  removed  into  one  of  my  green  flower-pots,  to  stand  on  my 
counter  to  draw  attention.  Next  day  some  one  fancied,  and  pur- 
chased plant  and  pot.  Next  day  I  went  when  the  market  was  nearly 
over,  judging  the  man  would  sell  cheaper,  rather  than  have  the 
trouble  of  carrying  them  over  the  river,  as  he  lived  at  Brooklyn — 
and  in  those  days  there  was  neither  steam  nor  horse-boats.  Accord- 
ingly I  purchased  two  plants,  and  having  sold  them,  I  began  to  think 
that  something  might  be  done  this  way,  and  so  I  continued  to  go  at 
the  close  of  the  market,  and  always  bargained  for  the  unsold  plants. 
The  man  finding  me  a  useful  customer,  would  assist  me  to  carry 
them  home,  and  show  me  how  to  shift  the  plants  out  of  his  pots  and 
put  them  into  green  pots,  if  my  customers  wished  it.  So  I  found 
hy  his  tongue  that  he  was  a  Scotchman,  and  being  countrymen,  we 
wrought  to  one  another's  hands ;  thus,  from  haying  one  plant,  in  a 
short  time  I  had  fifty. 

"  The  thing  being  a  novelty,  began  to  draw  attention ;  people  car- 
rying their  country  friends  to  see  the  curiosities  of  the  city,  would 


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218  FLT  MARKET. 

step  in  to  see  mj  plants.  In  some  of  these  visits  the  strangers 
would  express  a  wish  to  have  some  of  the  plants ;  but  having  so  tax 
to  go,  could  not  carry  them.  Then  they  would  ask  for  the  seeds, 
and  also  those  of  cabbage,  turnip,  or  radish  seeds,  &c. ;  but  here 
lay  the  difficulty,  as  no  one  sold  seed  in  New  York,  not  one  of  the 
farmers  or  gardeners  saved  more  than  what  they  wanted  for  their 
own  use ;  there  being  no  market  for  an  overplus.  In  this  dilemma, 
I  told  my  situation  to  George  Inglis,  the  man  from  whom  I  had  al* 
ways  bought  the  plants  in  the  Fly  Market.  He  said  he  was  now 
raising  seeds,  with  the  intention  of  selling  them  next  spring,  along 
with  his  plants,  in  the  market ;  but  if  I  would  take  his  seeds,  he 
would  quit  the  market,  and  stay  at  home  and  raise  plants  and  seeds 
for  me  to  sell.  A  bargain  was  immediately  struck;  I  purchased 
his  stock  of  seeds,  amounting  \o  fifteen  dottara;  and  thus  commenced 
a  business  on  the  17  th  of  September,  1805,  that  became  the  most  ex« 
tensive  of  the  sort  in  the  United  States."* 

We  find  in  the  month  of  March,  1805,  the  Clerk  of  this  market 
represented,  "That  many  persons  have  received  severe  falls  from 
the  steps,  which  are  placed  at  each  end  of  the  market,  arising  from 
their  being  too  narrow  on  the  tread,"  which  was  so  altered  as  to 
make  them  more  safe  and  convenient. 

In  1803  the  yellow  fever  appeared  here,  but  it  was  not  so  fatal 
as  in  1798,  although  very  bad,  and  in  some  instances  fatal  to  whole 
families.  The  first  case  which  will  be  noticed  here  was  a  man  of 
the  name  of  John  Sebring,  who  died  of  this  dreadful  disease  on  one 
of  the  butchers'  stalls  in  this  market,  on  the  19th  of  August.  He 
had  just  arrived  from  New  Orleans,  and  belonged  to  Fredericksburgh, 
Virginia.  When  taken  sick  he  sought  his  boarding-house,  but  was 
denied  admission ;  so  he  went  into  the  market,  laid  down  on  one  of 
the  stalls,  and  soon  after  died.  Just  above  the  market,  at  No.  55 
Maiden  Lane,  lived  a  family  named  Wesferna,  consisting  of  a  mother 
and  two  daughters ;  all  three  died  at  nearly  the  same  hour,  and  were 
so  reported  on  the  5th  of  October  following.  Mr.  Abraham 
O'Kie,  his  wife  and  three  children,  all  died  from  the  same  cause 
within  ten  days.  He  was  the  keeper  of  the  "  City  Assembly  Rooms," 
but  he  died  at  his  residence  No.  163  Greenwich  Street,  as  noticed 
October  3d  following. 

The  next  year  it  again  appeared  in  some  few  cases.  However,  we 
find  at  a  meeting  of  the  Humane  Society,  held  August  6th,  that  the 
Visiting  Committee  reported  a  donation  of  two  hundred  pounds  of 
.meat  received  from  the  butchers  here,  and  two  other  donations  of 
meat  from  Mr.  Francis  Arden,  also  of  this  market,  for  the  benefit 
of  the  poor  and  the  sick. 

*  **  Life  aod  WritiDgs  of  Grant  Thifrhwm,"  p.  62. 


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FLT.  MARKET.  219 

The  year  following  (1805)  the  fever  again  prevailed  with  some 
considerable  violence,  when  the  batchers  in  this  market  petitioned, 
on  the  6th  of  September,  that  ''  conceiving  the  health  of  the  city  in 
the  vicinity  of  the  Fly  Market  to  be  such  as  to  induce  them  to  be- 
lieve that  their  stands  will  be  of  no  public  utility  during  the  un- 
healthfulness  of  the  season/'  they  pray  for  permission  to  remove 
during  the  sickness,  which  was  granted  to  them.  Some  of  them  re- 
moved their  business  to  their  residences,  from  whence  they  supplied 
their  patrons ;  while  others  moved  their  stalls  to  Franklin  Square, 
Chatham  Square,  Broadway,  and  on  both  sides  of  the  Park. 

Eliphalet  Wheeler  says  his  place  of  business  was  located  on  the 
Park,  just  below  Chambers  Street,  on  Broadway.  A  few  years  before 
he  had  become  acquainted  with  a  most  remarkable  colored  woman, 
who  lived  on  Golden  Hill,  comer  of  Cliff  and  JohnStreets,named  Mary 
Simpson,  usually  known  as  Mary  Washington,  as  she  had  once  been 
a  most  faithful  slave  of  General  Washington,  whom  he  had  set  free, 
while  President  of  the  United  States,  residing  in  New  York.  After 
she  had  left  Washington's  family,  she  had  opened  a  little  store  in 
the  basement  of  this  house,  where  she  sold  milk,  butter,  and  eggs, 
with  cookies,  pies,  and  sweetmeats  of  her  own  manufacture ;  and 
she  also  took  in  washing  for  several  bachelor  gentlemen  who  re- 
sided in  the  neighborhood.  She  never  forgot  her  old  master's  birth- 
day, nor  did  she  want  her  friends  or  patrons  to  forget  it,  as  that 
day  was  above  all  the  holidays  with  her ;  and  she  kept  it  most  faith- 
fully, by  preparing  a  very  large  cake,  which  she  called  "Washington 
Cake,"  (once  a  favorite  of  Washington,)  a  large  quantity  of  punch, 
then  a  fashionable  drink,  and  hot  coffee.  These  were  nicely  ar- 
ranged upon  a  large  table ;  then  against  the  wall  hung  an  old  por- 
trait of  Washington,  which  graced  the  head  of  the  table,  and  a 
small  leather  trunk,  on  which  was  marked  the  initials  "  G.  W.," 
made  of  brass-head  nails ;  both  of  which  had  been  given  to  her  by 
Washington  himself.  Every  anniversary  morning,  some  of  the  first 
men,  old  and  young,  paid  a  ceremonious  visit  to  this  much  respect- 
ed colored  woman,  to  eat  her  "Washington  Cake,"  drink  her  punch 
andicoffee,  praise  her  old  master's  portrait,  and  his  many  noble  and 
heroic  deeds ;  and  thus  was  passed  every  Washington's  birth-day 
until  her  death.  She  said  she  "  was  fearful  that  if  she  did  not 
keep  up  the  day  by  her  display,  Washington  would  be  soon  for- 
gotten." 

During  the  several  yellow-fever  seasons,  about  the  year  1800,  Mr. 
Wheeler  says,  "Mary  often  came  to  see  me  and  beg  offal  meat, 
sheep-heads,  Ac. ;  some  of  which  she  made  soup  of  for  the  many  des- 
titute and  sick  and  the  rest  she  fed  to  numerous  starved  cats,  which 


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FLT   IfABKET. 

had  been  left  behind  by  many  families,  in  their  haste  to  leave  the 
infected  district. 

Grant  Thorburn  says,  (in  a  letter  to  me,)  "  When  the  yellow  fe- 
vers prevailed,  people  fled,  and  left  their  cats  to  starve;  soon  the 
hungry  cats  came  howling  round  the  dwellings  of  those  whose  doors 
were  open.  Mary  Washington  and  her  stout  colored  servant^girl 
went  every  morning  with  two  large  sacks  to  the  butchers,  who  al- 
ways cheerfully  gave  them  as  many  sheep-heads  as  they  could  carry. 
On  arriving  home,  they  found  five-score  and  five  starving  cats  wait- 
ing their  return;  straightway  each  with  her  hatchet  split  the  sculls 
and  scattered  the  brains,  when  the  cats  ate  and  were  satisfied.  I 
had  full  share  of  starving  cats  to  provide  for.  The  weather  being 
hot,  and  the  windows  open,  the  cats  came  in.  We  were  obliged  to 
keep  a  woman  with  a  stick  to  sit  by  the  table,  while  the  servant 
was  placing  the  food  before  us.  Every  day  scores  of  cats  met  on 
the  pavement  opposite  his  house  ;'e7ery  day  I  placed  dishes  on  the 
side-walks,  and  got  many  gallons  of  milk  from  the  kind  milkman 
for  the  poor  cats.  Soon  the  cats  found  their  way  up  town,  and  got 
better  quarters." 

At  an  early  day  Mary  became  attached  to  St.  Oeorge's  Church, 
and  after  a  time  she  became  acquainted  with  the  minister,  Reverend 
Doctor  Milnor,  who  found  in  her  a  quiet,  respectful  woman,  with  a 
most  excellent  heart,  full  of  kindness  and  attention,  especially  to- 
wards the  sick  and  needy.  She  was  very  fond  of  hearing  the  Bible 
read,  and  became  so  anxious  to  know  how  to  read  it,  that  she  was 
placed  in  the  Sunday-school,  where,  by  great  exertions  and  the  kind 
assistance  of  Doctor  Milnor,  she  soon  obtained  this  knowledge,  and 
this  good  book  became  her  daily  companion.  Even  when  going  to 
market  she  carried  it  with  her;  and  if  she  found  Mr.  Wheeler  not 
engaged,  he  was  pleased  to  hold  her  Bible  while  she  recited,  some- 
times, whole  chapters  at  a  time,  without  missing  a  word,  so  reten- 
tive was  her  memory. 

At  all  the  meetings  of  the  Church,  no  person  was  a  more  regular 
attendant  than  this  colored  woman ;  in  fact,  she  was  looked  upon,  and 
felt  herself,  a  little  above  some  of  the  colored  persons  who  came  to 
this  Church,  and  would  not  sit  with  them.  Her  many  good  qualities 
were  considered  by  Doctor  Milnor,  who  had  a  chair  especially  pro- 
vided for  her  in  the  gallery.  She  could  do  nothing  of  importance 
without  consulting  her  *^Bo88'^  as  she  kindly  called  the  Reverend 
Doctor  Milnor;  and  when  she  died,  she  bequeathed  about  eighteen 
hundred  dollars  to  the  Sunday-school,  and  to  be  expended  under  the 
direction  of  Dr.  Milnor.  One  of  his  sons  said  to  me,  "  If  anybody 
ever  deserved  a  monument,  that  colored  woman,  Mary  Simpson,  was 
one  of  them."    So  let  her  name  and  example  live  t 


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FLT  MARKET.  221 

tn  the  spring  of  1806  several  complaints  had  been  made  against 
some  uncleanly  slaughter-houses,  not  without  just  cause.  Several 
volunteers  among  some  of  the  more  respectable  portion  of  the  butch- 
ers offered  their  services  to  the  Board  of  Health;  and  a  Committee 
of  the  Board  of  Health  was  appointed  and  conferred  with  this  Com- 
mittee of  Butchers,  on  the  subject  of  regulating  all  the  slaughter- 
houses in  the  city.  In  their  report,  dated  June  14th,  1806,  the  Com- 
mittee state  that  they  had  met  with  the  following  butchers :  *'  David 
Marsh,  William  Wright,  Jacob  Tier,  William  Ohivers,  Daniel  Win- 
ship,  Jacob  Yarian,  and  Christian  Miller,  who  will  undertake  on 
the  part  of  the  butchers  to  inspect  the  slaughter-houses,  and  carry 
into  effect  such  parts  of  the  law  for  preventing  nuisances  as  related 
to  butchers;  for  which  purpose  the  Committee  recommended  that  the 
aforesaid  persons  should  be  appointed  inspectors  of  slaughter-houses 
by  the  Common  Council,  and  empowered  to  prosecute  offenders  for 
the  transgressions  of  the  law  for  preventing  nuisances,  and  of  such 
regulations  as  the  butchers  may  adopt  among  themselves  for  the 
purpose  of  conducting  their  business  with  every  possible  propriety.'' 

Several  of  these  butchers  were  also  leading  spirits  in  the  two 
great  political  parties  of  the  day,  then  known  as  Federalists  and 
Republicans,  and  they  occasionally  brought  their  power  to  bear, 
either  on  one  side  or  the  other.  An  instance  of  a  great  wrong  was 
attempted  by  the  party  in  power  in  the  month  of  July,  1806.  Twelve 
Republican  butchers  petitioned  to  the  Board  for  as  many  stands  in 
the  lower,  or  *'Fish  Market,"  which  caused  a  resolution  to  be  passed 
in  the  Board,  granting  and  directing  the  Market  Committee  to  as- 
sign stands  for  them ;  although  several  of  them  occupied  stands  in 
this  and  other  markets.  In  a  few  days  after,  this  Committee  report- 
ed, "That  they  have  deliberately  considered  the  nature  of  the  duty 
enjoined  on  them,  and  with  all  due  deference  to  the  judgment  of 
this  Board,  do  give  it  as  their  opinion,  that  it  would  be  improper 
and  ui\just  to  give  away  these  stalls  to  any  individual  whatever,  in- 
asmuch as  an  offer  has  been  made  for  one  of  these  middle  stalls,  at 
tiie  rate  of  $120  per  annum,  and  numbers  of  butchers  «tand  ready 
to  give  the  same  amount  yearly  for  the  remainder  of  them,  (and 
more  money,  if  required.)  They  are  clearly  of  opinion  that  a  con- 
siderable revenue  may  be  derived  to  the  Corporation  funds  by  leasing 
the  said  stalls  for  1,  8,  5,  or  7  years.  To  give  away  these  stalls  in 
the  manner  contemplated  by  the  resolution  of  last  Monday  will  cer- 
tainly cause  a  great  clamor  and  discontent  by  the  citizens;  and 
there  will  be  evidently  a  want  of  room  for  the  country  people,  as 
also  a  deficiency  for  the  use  of  the  fishermen." 

This  subject  did  ''cause  a  great  clamor  and  discontent,"  especially 


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FLT   MARKET. 

among  the  ^'  press ''  of  both  parties,  who  indulged  in  criminations 
and  recriminations;  each  party  showing  up  the  favor itisms  or  rascal* 
ities  of  the  other  by  turns,  and  it  is  now  difficult  to  judge  which  woe 
the  worst. 

The  butchers  petitioned,  and  also  held  several  meetings,  in  rela- 
tion to  this  subject,  and  at  one  of  them  the  following  proceedings 
took  place: 

"At  a  meeting  of  the  butchers  who  occupy  stands  in  the  different 
markets  in  the  City  of  New  York,  held  at  Pierson's  Tavern,  Slst 
of  July,  1806: 

"  It  being  well  ascertained  that  the  Common  Council  of  this  City 
have  lately  resolved  to  convert  part  of  the  lower  Fly  Market,  at 
present  used  by  the  fishermen  and  country  people,  into  a  flesh  mar- 
ket,  and  to  allow  fourteen  stalls  to  be  erected  tiierein  for  the  use  of 
Bs  many  butchers,  who  have  been  selected  and  named  for  that  pur- 
pose, and  conferred  upon  them  these  stands  gratuitously,  when  many 
of  the  butchers  occupying  stands  in  the  Fly  Market  have  paid  large 
sums  of  money  for  theirs — ^in  confident  expectation  that  no  stalls 
were  to  be  erected  in  the  lower  or  fish  market,  but  have  granted  to 
fourteen  select  favorites  privileges  which  would  have  produced, 
either  at  public  or  private  sale,  at  least  ttoenty  thousand  dollars  to 
the  treasury  of  the  city.  John  Pessengeb,  Chairman. 

Joseph  0.  Booebt,  Secretary." 

As  the  prosperity  of  this  market  increased,  ofttimes  the  greater 
part  of  the  country  market  would  be  in  possession  of  persons  whom 
the  laws  excluded.  From  this  fact  originated  ''Shirk"  or  ''Shark 
Butchers"  who  were  generally  a  set  of  shiftless  characters,  devoid 
either  of  principle  or  honor ;  made  up  of  those  who  had  worked  a 
while  at  the  business  until  discharged ;  or  others  from  about  the 
country,  who  could  not  obtain  licenses ;  and  others,  again,  who  had 
been  in  business,  but  not  succeeding,  either  from  their  extravagance, 
dissipation,  or  otherwise,  were  obliged  to  adopt  any  measure  where- 
by they  might  exist.  Many  of  them  often  assumed  the  garb  of  coun- 
trymen, in  which  they  almost  daily  visited  this  portion  of  the  mar- 
ket with  their  quarters  of  small  meats  nicely  laid  in  the  country 
farmers'  baskets ;  while  others  represented  themselves  as  agents  for 
countrymen,  or  made  certain  arrangements  or  collusion  with  the 
officers  in  charge ;  and  when  driven  off  from  the  stands  or  benches, 
they  would  "shirk"  around  for  another;  and  they  became  known 
as  "shirkers"  and  "sharks"  There  were  also  a  few  of  the  regular 
butchers  who  were  permitted,  or  specially  licensed,  "  to  sell  small 
meats  by  the  quarter"  in  this  lower  market;  they,  however,  were 
confined  to  certain  parts  and  particular  stands. 


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FLT  MARKET.  223 

In  1807  these  "  shirks  "  became  so  formidable  as  to  almost  exelnde 
the  country  people,  who,  with  several  citizens,  complain  to  the  au- 
thorities, which  was  followed  by  the  regular  batchers,  who  also  ask- 
ed for  relief.  They  wished  none  but  farmers,  "  who  bring  their 
stock  to  market,  raised  on  their  own  farms,  to  sell  meat  by  the 
quarter,"  in  this  part  of  the  market.  The  Deputy  Clerk  was  "  in- 
structed to  use  his  utmost  vigilance  to  detect  such  offenders  as  shall 
sell  contrary  to  the  tenth  section  of  the  law,"  Ac.,  which  had  the 
desired  effect  for  a  short  period. 

About  this  period  a  Philadelphian  visitor,  who  had  been  to  this 
market,  was  comparing  it  with  the  principal  market  in  Philadelphia, 
in  a  letter  to  one  of  the  editors  of  a  Philadelphia  Magazine,  when  he 
says:  "  This  morning  I  accompanied  '  mine  host'  to  the  Fly  Market, 
which  is  the  principal  one  in  this  city — the  whole  forming  a  line 
perhaps  as  long  as  one  of  the  ranges  of  the  Philadelphia  'High  Street 
Market.' "  "  Fish,"  he  says,  "  may  be  had  in  greater  plenty,  variety, 
and  freshness.  There  is  not  found  here  that  regularity  or  conven- 
ience which  distinguish  the  '  markets'  of  my  native  city.  The  fruits 
and  vegetables,  Ac,  with  the  owners,  are  exposed  to  all  the  injuries 
of  the  weather;  they  are  ranged  on  the  side  of  the  market-house  in 
the  street,  on  the  pavement,  so  that  there  is  no  more  empt;  space 
than  is  barely  sufiScient  to  accommodate  the  foot-passengers.  Every- 
thing which  is  exposed  for  sale  may  be  bought  without  walking 
half  the  distance  which  it  is  necessary  to  do  at  Philadelphia."* 

The  prices  of  provisions  are  also  noticed  by  Melish,  in  his  Travels, 
who  also  refers  to  this  market,  as  follows:  "There  are  five  public 
markets  in  this  city,  of  which  the  principal  is  the  Fly  Market,  and 
those  are  well  supplied  with  wholesome  provisions,  vegetables,  fruit, 
and  fish;  and  the  prices  are  generally  reasonable.  A  few  of  these 
may  be  quoted:  beef,  mutton,  and  veal,  9  to  12  cents  per  pound ;  a 
turkey,  75  cente ;  a  goose,  62  cents ;  ducks  and  fowls,  25  cents  each ; 
e^^  14  cents  per  dozen ;  butter,  22  cents  per  pound ;  fish  and  fruit 
plenty  and  cheap." 

The  fishermen  were  now  increasing,  and  were  in  a  thriving  condi- 
tion, although  much  incommoded  in  the  slip  for  want  of  room  for 
their  fishing  vessels,  and  they  were  obliged  to  pile  their  empty  fish- 
cars  on  the  dock  or  wharf,  which  created  trouble  between  them  and 
the  Street  Commissioner.  The  Board,  at  a  meeting  May  18, 1806, 
ordered  this  oiBoer  "  to  inquire  on  what  terms  a  water-lot  at  Brook- 
lyn can  be  purchased  for  the  accommodation  of  fisherman  cars." 
Before  this  arrangement  was  made,  the  fishermen  petitioned  "  the 
necessity  of  our  having  our  cars  out  of  the  water,  that  they  may 
«  Literary  MaguBine,  yol.  vii.,  p.  isa 


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224  PLY   MARKET. 

dry,  and  by  that  means  be  cleared  from  the  grass,  Ac,  which  will 
otherwise  collect  and  destroy  our  fish ;  and  it  is  necessary  to  have 
the  cars  near  our  place  of  keeping  fish,  as  it  is  very  frequently  the 
case  that  our  amoncks  or  fishing-boats  arrive  at  the  dead  hours  of  the 
night,  and  in  the  slack  time  of  tide  our  fish  will  die  almost  inatan* 
taneously,  unless  they  are  shifted  into  cars.  The  number  of  smacks 
employed  regularly  in  this  business  will  exceed  seventy,  and  die 
number  of  cars  now  upon  the  wharf  will  fall  short  of  two  to  one 
smack ;  and  as  the  fish  increase  the  cars  will  materially  diminish, 
and  the  principal  part  of  the  summer  season  there  will  be  but  few 
upon  the  wharf."    This  was  signed  by 

Oeorge  Rogers,         Joseph  Latham,        Joseph  Ashbey, 
Roger  Crandall,       Jasper  Latham,         Jonathan  Crocker. 

Their  petition,  with  other  influences,  stopped  their  removal  for  a 
period,  but  the  Corporation  eventually  (in  1810)  removed  them  to 
Brooklyn.  The  fishermen  had  threatened,  that  if  they  were  removed 
or  ordered  to  be  removed  from  Fly  Market  Slip,  they  would  stop 
the  supplies  of  fish ;  and  they  kept  their  word.  This  created  con- 
siderable feeling  with  the  public  on  being  cut  off  from  one  of  the 
principal  necessaries  of  life,  and  the  fishermen  were  much  blamed. 

One  of  them  appeared  in  the  "  press,"  in  these  words:  "  The  pres- 
ent suppression  of  the  regular  supply  of  wofjish  at  the  markets  in 
this  city  having  justly  excited  the  attention  of  the  public,  one  of  the 
condemned  feels  himself  called  upon,  by  the  respect  always  due  to 
the  constituted  authorities  and  the  citizens  at  large,  to  give  some 
explanations  of  the  case. 

*'  It  is  well  known  that  for  a  number  of  years  past  the  fishermen 
have  been  accommodated  with  room  on  the  wharf  adjoining  the 
Slip,  as  a  deposit  for  their  cars.  It  was  necessary  that  the  cars 
should  be  kept  out  of  water,  and  it  was  not  practicable  to  keep  them 
at  Brooklyn,  or  at  any  other  place  at  a  distance  from  the  market. 
Let  it  suffice  to  say,  without  going  into  a  detail  of  the  whole  busi- 
ness of  catching  fish,  bringing  them  to  market,  and  keeping  them 
alive,  sweet,  clean,  and  wholesome  while  there,  that  this  arrange- 
ment is  indispensable,  and  without  it  the  fish  market  will  lose  one- 
half  of  its  worth  and  usefulness."  "  The  Harbor-Master,  also,  on 
Friday  last,  gave  us  express  permission  and  direction  to  place  our 
cars  in  the  position  in  which  they  were  found."  "And  the  result 
is,  that  we  must  be  allowed  our  old  privileges,  or  others  that  will 
answer  the  same  purpose,  or  we  cannot  go  on  with  our  business." 

This  removal  of  the  cars,  even  if  the  city  had  been  regularly 
supplied,  would  have  subjected  the  fishermen  to  a  great  deal  of 
trouble  and  labor,  in  conveying  these  unwieldy /^A-co^etf  across  the 


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FLY   MARKET.  225 

Bast  Biver»  and  back  again,  against  the  usual  strong  current  of  that 
river.    The  fact  was,  however,  established,  that  the  City  of  New 
York  was  without  a  supply  of  fish,  when  they  could  so  easily  be 
obtained ;  and  of  course,  the  consequent  rise  of  the  small  quantity 
that  were  otherwise  brought  there.    This  soon  brought  forth  ap- 
peals from  the  public  press,  followed  by  petitions,  and  more  es- 
pecially from  the  poor  retail  fishermen,  who  depended  upon  their 
daily  sales  for  a  living.    Those  from  this  market  who  signed  were: 
Elisha  Lymans,      James  Qriffing,  Jr.,    Bussel  Beckwith, 
Wm.  Stebbins,        Nathaniel  Harris,       Clark  Trumans, 
Edward  Tinker,     Joshua  Parker,  William  Baxter, 

Jonathan  Crocker,  Juorry  Tinker,  Bradley  S.  Wiggins, 

and  Jeremiah  Tinker,  who  asked  for  relief;  and  the  Board  acceded 
to  their  request,  '*by  placing  the  cars  at  the  end  of  the  Slip.'' 

In  the  "war  of  1812,"  one  of  these  Fly  Market  fishing  smacks 
engaged  and  captured  the  British  sloop  or  tender  named  the  Eagh, 
which  was  prowling  around  the  Hook,  seizing  all  the  market-boats 
and  other  small  craft  that  came  in  her  way.  The  manner  in  which 
this  capture  was  performed  is  thus  described :  "  The  fishing  smack, 
named  the  Yankee^  was  borrowed  of  some  fishermen  at  the  Fly 
Market,  in  the  City  of  New  York,  and  a  calf,  a  sheep,  and  a  goose 
purchased,  and  secured  on  deck.  Between  thirty  and  forty  men, 
well  armed  with  muskets,  were  secreted  in  the  cabin  and  fore-peak 
of  the  smack.  Thus  prepared,  she  stood  out  to  sea,  as  if  going  on 
a  fishing  trip  to  the  Banks:  three  men  only  being  on  deck,  dressed 
in  fishermen's  apparel,  with  buflF  caps  on.  The  Eagle^  on  perceiv- 
ing the  smack,  immediately  gave  chase,  and  after  coming  up  with 
her,  and  finding  she  had  live  stock  on  deck,  ordered  her  to  go  down 
to  the  Commodore,  then  about  five  miles  distant.  The  helmsman 
answered,  'Aye,  aye,  sir  I'  and  apparently  put  up  the  helm  for  that 
purpose,  which  brought  him  alongside  of  the  Iksgle^  not  more  than 
three  yards  distance.  The  watch-word,  *  LatDrence'  was  then  given, 
when  the  armed  men  rushed  on  deck  from  their  hiding-places,  and 
poured  into  her  a  volley  of  musketry,  which  struck  the  crew  with 
dismay,  and  drove  them  all  down  so  precipitately  into  the  hold  of 
the  vessel,  that  they  had  not  time  to  strike  their  colors.  The 
JSbgfe,  with  the  prisoners,  was  carried  to  the  city,  and  landed  at 
Whitehall,  amidst  the  shouts  and  plaudits  of  thousands  of  specta- 
tors assembled  on  the  Battery,  celebrating  the  '  Fourth  of  July,' 
1813.  Those  engaged  in  this  successful  affair  were  Sailing-Master 
Percival  and  several  volunteers  from  the  flotilla." 

Provisions  at  that  period  had  become  quite  scarce  and  high,  and 
more  especially  in  the  supplies  of  fish,  which  many  poor  families 
Vol.  I.— 15 


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226  PL^   MARKET. 

had  previously,  through  the  summer  season,  almost  exclusively  lived 
upon.  A  remarkable  circumstance  occurred  in  the  fall  of  1813, 
which  tended  to  relieve  them  for  several  weeks ;  and  is  thus  noticed 
in  the  press :  "  Since  the  interruption  of  our  accustomed  supplies  of 
fish  from  the  eastern  coast,  by  the  British  blockaders,  the  want  is 
in  a  great  measure  provided  for  by  remarkable  quantities  of  chub  or 
small  mackerel,  with  which  the  New  York  markets  abound.  They 
are  taken  in  nets,  in  the  head  of  Long  Island  Sound,  in  such  great 
numbers,  that  72,000,  we  are  told,  were  caught  at  one  haul  a  few 
days  since.  Such  an  abundance  of  this  species  of  fish  has  never 
been  known  in  this  country  since  a  similar  occurrence  during  the 
Revolutionary  War."*  I  am  told  that  the  rivers,  inlets,  and  creeks 
in  and  around  the  harbor  of  New  York,  and  more  especially  along 
the  East  River  shores,  were  so  well  stocked  with  these  fish,  that 
they  were  taken  by  thousands,  with  little  trouble ;  and  the  com- 
mon price  for  them  in  the  markets  was  "a  shilling  a  dozen." 

The  few  regular  butchers  which  were  "permitted"  in  the  country 
part  of  this  market  had  from  time  to  time  extended  or  otherwise 
encroached  on  the  market  space,  to  suit  themselves,  without  consult- 
ing the  Clerk  or  Committee.  In  consequence  of  this,  the  Board,  on 
the  17th  of  April,  1809,  passed  a  resolution,  "  That  persons  having 
permits  to  sell  small  meats  in  the  lower  or  country  market,  arc 
hereby  directed  to  use,  in  future,  instead  of  their  present  stalls, 
benches  of  such  form  and  dimensions  as  the  Deputy  Clerk  may 
direct." 

The  troubles  and  duties  of  the  Clerk,  John  Minuse,  are  also 
noted  in  another  form,  with  some  of  these  occupants.  On  the  3d 
of  September,  1810,  the  Clerk  complains  of  an  individual,  whom 
we  shall  call  Charles  Conlin,  to  the  authorities,  and  says :  "  Mr. 
Charles  Conlin,  a  permitted  butcher  in  the  Fly  Market,  has  been 
guilty  of  giving  in  false  returns,  ((^  the  number  of  animals  he 
killed  J  which  I  have  detected  several  times,  and  he  won't  refrain ; 
he  says  that  he  don^t  care  about  it,  for  he  will  cheat  whenever  he  can; 
and  if  they  turn  him  out  of  the  market,  he  can  sell  meat  wherever 
he  pleases."  A  resolution  passed  revoking  Conlin's  permit.  About 
a  week  after,  Conlin  presented  a  petition,  in  which  he  says:  "  That 
for  the  last  four  years  past  he  has  sold  meat  by  the  quarter  in  the 
lower  market,  and  was  a  few  days  ago  deprived  of  his  license,  on 
account  of  some  person  having  informed  the  Clerk  that  he  had  not 
given  in  a  true  account  of  the  meat  sold ;  which  conduct  he  is  sin* 
cerely  sorry  for,"  and  wishes  to  be  restored. 

The  Market  Committee,  after  hearing  the  case,  on  the  15th  of  the 
*  National  InteUigenoer,  October  23,  ISia. 


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FLY   MARKET.  227 

same  month  reported  on  the  facts  as  were  presented :  "  That  the  day 
on  which  the  petitioner  was  complained  of,  he  killed  eighteen  sheep; 
ten  of  which  were  sold  in  the  market,  and  the  market  fees  regularly 
accounted  for;  of  the  remaining  eight,  three  were  placed  in  the 
market  in  a  basket,  covered,  where  they  remained  not  more  than 
half  an  hour,  when  they  were  sent  to  a  Mrs.  McE's  boarding-house, 
and  sold  to  her  for  one  ehiUing  the  quarter.  C  Cheap  meat  for 
boarders  r J  They  were  never  offered  for  sale  in  the  market,  it 
being  the  practice  of  the  petitioner,  at  different  times,  to  send  his 
meat  of  such  poor  quality  to  the  above-mentioned  boarding-house. 
The  remaining  five  were  never  taken  out  of  the  marke^cart,  but 
were  sent  to  Mr.  Winship,  for  the  supply  of  the  Navy- Yard  and 
frigate  at  the  Wallabout,"  The  petitioner  being  a  man  of  family, 
and  of  respectable  connections,  the  Committee  recommended  to  the 
Board  "to  pardon  his  offence,  and  restore  to  him  his  license;" 
which  was  done. 

Another  case  took  place  at  this  market  in  the  early  part  of  next 
year,  for  an  infringement  of  the  market  law.  It  appears  that  the 
Clerk  complained  of  John  Miller  for  forestalling,  Ac,  but  he  repre- 
sented that  he  had  a  permission  from  the  Alderman  to  make  such 
sales.  He  was  summoned  for  trial  before  Justice  Henry  Meigs,  who 
reported  on  his  case  as  follows :  "  It  appeared  to  me,  in  the  trial  of 
the  cause  mentioned  in  the  preceding  petition,  that  although  the  de- 
fendant, John  Miller,  was  without  a  legal  authority  to  sell,  as 
charged  against  him,  yet  he  must  have  considered  himself  justly  au- 
thorized, by  virtue  of  the  permit  mentioned ;  and  that  he  has  not, 
therefoi-c,  willfully  infringed  the  ordinance  regulating  public  mar- 
b^ts.     March  18, 1811,    H.  Meigs,  As^'t  Justice  of  the  First  Ward." 

This  country  market  was  a  continual  source  of  trouble  not  only 
to  the  citizens  and  regular  butchers,  but  to  the  "  Board,"  which 
usually  took  place  after  a  change  of  officers  and  their  different  par- 
ties. New  committees  came  into  power  with  new  ideas  and  wants, 
many  of  which  were  not  practical,  being  either  too  stringent,  or 
tinctured  too  strongly  of  free  trade,  to  be  suitable  for  the  protection 
of  the  citizens. 

Laws  were  passed  and  rescinded,  and  licenses  and  permits  were 
given  to  favorites  by  one  party,  to  be  taken  away  by  the  other.  This 
state  of  things  had  originated  and  grown  with  those  parties ;  and 
now  (1858)  they  have  so  much  enlarged  and  perfected  on  that  danc- 
ing-in  and  dancing-out  system  of  government,  that  the  clever,  honest 
people  **pay  the  piper"  any  amount  demanded,  as  naturally  and 
faithfully  as  if  they  had  agreed  with  them  on  prices  to  be  named 
after  their  election.    This  is  not  all :  these  parties  have  continually 


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228  ^^^   MARKET. 

added  to  their  numbers ;  many  an  honest,  independent-minded  man, 
through  his  necessities  and  wants,  which  actually  have  been  driven 
into  their  destructive  and  detested  ranks,  taken  from  them  their  in- 
dependence and  self-respect,  to  be  at  last  turned  into  the  pot-house 
brawler,  drunkard,  liar,  perjurer,  thief,  dc,  dc,  dec;  or  if  he  has 
been  successful  of  this  world's  goods,  through  rascality,  pecula- 
tion, or  collusion,  he  assumes  the  model  man  in  conversation  ordy, 
loudly  condemning  those  who  attempt  to  mount  the  same  ladder 
which  carried  him  above  the  level,  high  upon  the  aristocratic  throne 
of  fashion  and  worldliness. 

But  I  have  strayed  from  the  subject  I  had  intended  to  introduce, 
which  were  two  resolutions  offered  to  the  Board  by  the  Market  Com- 
mittee, December  8th,  1817.  The  first  reads:  ^* Besdved,  That  the 
Clerk  of  the  Common  Council  be  directed  to  make  a  register  of  the 
stalls  held  by  the  butchers  in  the  several  markets  of  this  city ;  and 
that  for  this  purpose,  the  several  butchers  holding  stands  be  direct- 
ed to  make  return  to  the  Deputy  Clerks  of  the  respective  markets 
of  the  number  of  stalls  they  hold,  and  that  the  butchers  renew  their 
licenses  in  the  month  of  April  in  each  year,  for  the  better  regulation 
of  the  markets. 

'^  Resolved,  That  all  butchers  holding  permits  from  this  Board  be 
required  to  report  on  or  before  the  first  day  of  January  next,  as  all 
permits  will  after  that  date  be  considered  void,  unless  renewed  by 
the  Corporation." 

Many  of  the  old  permit  and  **  Shirk  Butchers,"  who  had  been  per- 
mitted  to  stand  in  this  market  for  many  years,  considered  they  were 
not  called  upon  to  renew  their  privileges,  and  failed,  or  would  not 
obey  the  last  resolution.  The  Clerk  complained  of  them,  and  they 
were  suspended,  along  with  several  others,  who  almost  daily  smug- 
gled themselves  in  against  the  law.  Among  the  most  noted  *'  Shirk 
Butchers,"  who  petitioned  in  the  month  of  August,  1818,  to  be  "re- 
stored to  that  privilege,"  was  Jacob  Patchen,  Jesse  Coope,  and 
Israel  Reynolds.  Their  petition  was  referred  to  a  committee,  who, 
on  the  7th  of  September  following,  reported  that  "  The  small  meats 
brought  to  the  loioer  market  are,  with  very  few  exceptions,  just  bought 
by  the  persons  offering  them  for  sale,  or  the  animals  are  sent  them 
by  some  persons  residing  a  few  miles  in  the  country  to  sell  on  com- 
mission, or  as  pretended  agents  for  the  owner,  to  the  great  detriment 
of  our  own  butchers,  who  are  restricted  to  a  public  stand.  The 
system  now  pursued,  it  is  a  rare  thing  to  see  a  farmer  in  the  market 
with  meats,  Ac,  of  his  own  raising ;  the  truth  is,  that  nearly,  if  not  all, 
these  agents  are  butchers  or  hucksters  in  disguise.  The  Committee 
cannot  perceive  the  propriety  of  permitting  the  market  thus  to 


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FLT   MAtlKET.  229 

be  occupied  to  the  exclnsion  of  our  own  citizens,  who  are  regular 
butchers  and  subject  to  taxation."  This  petition  was  denied,  and  an 
ordinance  was  ordered  to  be  reported  on  the  subject  accordingly. 

About  this  period  died,  at  a  great  age,  a  yerj  venerable  and  most 
eccentric  man,  known  to  many  of  our  citizens  who  visited  this  mar- 
ket; some  of  whom  even  at  this  day  remember  *' Johnny  Day,"  or 
rather  he  was  more  generally  known — some  say  from  ten  to  twenty 
years — under  the  affectionate  and  familiar  name  of  Old  Johnny." 
His  appearance  was  that  of  an  old  salt  or  broken-down  sailor,  al- 
ways noted  for  wearing  a  dirty  pair  of  patched  duck  trowsers;  a 
once  blue,  short  monkey-jacket ;  a  slouched  tarpaulin  for  head  cover- 
ing, and  on  his  feet  a  pair  of  old  stout  shoes,  which  had  been  pf  etty 
well  worn  and  patched  before  they  came  into  his  possession. 

His  history  no  doubt  was  one  full  of  events,  and  of  a  character 
somewhat  strange  as  well  as  romantic.  His  daily  habits  and  man- 
ners, however,  appeared  somewhat  like  his  wardrobe,  and  were  quite 
as  eccentric.  Long  before  the  sun  peeped  over  the  Long  Island 
liills,  every  morning  found  him  at  this  market  waiting  the  call  of 
his  patrons  for  any  light  work  or  odd  jobs  they  might  offer  him, 
whether  to  transport  a  tray  of  meat,  carry  a  basket  of  potatoes,  or 
toddle  home  after  some  good  housewife  with  her  marketing — ^not 
that  he  was  an  admirer  of  the  softer  sex,  or  was  willing  to  serve 
them,  as  he  seldom  spoke  to  or  answered  their  questions,  but  re- 
ceived their  directions  and  their  rewards  in  dumb  show.  Previous 
to  his  coming  to  this  market,  he  said,  he  had  not  spoken  to  a  woman 
for  about  sixty  years. 

This  peculiar  habit  of  "Old  Johnny"  towards  the  female  sex 
rendered  him  not  a  favorite,  and  therefore  he  was  rarely  employed 
by  them,  although  there  were  one  or  two  old  hucksters  who  could 
occasionally  prevail  upon  him  to  do  some  little  service ;  among  these 
was  Mrs.  Spicer  and  If  rs.  Tallman,  who  now  and  then  gave  him  a 
cup  of  warm  coffee  or  other  refreshment,  after  finishing  their  break- 
fiist. 

Old  Johnny's  residence  and  lodgings  were  in  the  cellar  of  a  house 
in  Banker  (Madison)  Street,  where  he  went  regularly  every  night  to 
sleep;  but  his  boarding-house  was  in  and  about  this  old  market. 

At  the  commencement  of  the  war  of  1812  he  was  then  acknowl- 
edged to  be  over  one  hundred  years  of  age,  although  he  still  retain- 
ed the  appearance  on  his  visage  and  gait  of  the  earlier  days,  when 
he  first  became  known  here.  The  only  complaint  he  ever  made  was 
from  occasional  **  sick  turns,"  no  doubt  the  effect  of  his  extreme  age ; 
and  in  one  of  these,  Mrs.  Spicer  induced  him  to  go  and  see  Mrs. 
Brownell,  a  most  benevolent  lady,  residing  on  the  corner  opposite 


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230  FLY   MARKET. 

the  market,  and  who  was  held  in  high  repute  for  her  knowledge  as 
a  medical  doctrcss.  A  few  simple  remedies  applied,  with  the  more 
important  nourishing  diet  supplied,  soon  placed  **01d  Johnny  "  in  a 
position  to  puraue  his  usual  routine ;  in  addition  to  this,  it  opened 
a  channel  to  the  old  man's  heart ;  he  began  to  look  upon  the  sex 
with  a  less  bilious  eye,  and  with  a  clearer  heart,  he  began  to  think 
there  were  some  kind,  true-hearted  women,  even  in  this  world ;  as^ 
an  acknowledgment  of  this  newly-discovered  magnet  to  his  heart 
and  soul,  he  was  now  more  than  willing  to  go  to  the  pump  a  dozen 
times  a  day  for  water,  to  carry  fire-wood  as  often  into  the  bouse,  or 
to  do  any  little  or  great  service  within  his  power  for  the  "Fair  Lady/' 
as  he  now  and  ever  after  fondly  termed  her,  who  had  not  only  acted 
as  his  physician,  but  now  had  become  his  friend.  While  suffering 
in  one  of  these  "  sick  turns,"  Mr,  Brownell,  (whom  he  honored  with 
the  title  of  "General,")  as  well  as  Mrs.  B.,  frequently  questioned 
him  concerning  the  early  history  of  his  life.  Johnny  was  not  com- 
municative on  this  matter  in  the  presence  of  Mr.  B.,  or  would  only 
utter  a  few  exclamatory  sentences,  and  then  suddenly  stop  with  a 
common  expression,  "  Take  care,  Johnny — ^you  have  said  enough ;" 
then  put  his  wiry  fingers  to  his  mouth,  close  his  lips,  and  so  remain 
a  few  moments. 

Mrs.  B's  kindness,  however,  would  occasionally  induce  him  to  un- 
fold portions  of  his  life's  history.  "  That  he  once  had  the  honor  to 
hold  the  commission  of  Lieutenant  in  the  British  naval  service: 
that  he  was  engaged  to  be  married  to  a  girl  of  good  family — 
young,  beautiful,  rich,  and  accomplished ;  but,  unfortunately,  he  left 
his  betrothed  in  the  charge  of  a  supposed  friend,  who  cruelly  de- 
ceived and  slandered  him:  gained  her  affections,  and  married  her; 
when  he  afterwards,  in  a  duel,  shot  him  dead,  fled  from  England, 
and  left  all  behind."  Having  gone  thus  far,  he  would  suddenly  ex- 
claim, "  Take  care,  Johnny — you  have  said  enough ;"  and  then  re- 
main silent,  though  often  followed  by  two  large  tears  rolling  down 
his  wrinkled  face. 

This  was  all  that  she,  by  questions  put  to  him,  could  ever  elicit. 
Years  passed  rapidly  away,  still  "Old  Johnny"  was  at  his  post 
and  haunts  around  this  market,  till  about  the  year  1818,  when  one 
day  he  was  taken  suddenly  ill  in  Pearl  Street,  before  the  meeting- 
house  of  the  Society  of  Friends;  here  he  had  lain  some  time:  the 
people  pai^scd  by  unheediugly ;  none  assisted  him ;  many  supposing 
he  was  a  drunken  vagabond  lying  on  the  side-walk. 

Mr.  Brownell  learned  at  his  store,  from  some  of  the  pa«»er»*y, 
of  "Old  Johnny's"  situation.  His  wife  was  informed,  and  hnmedi* 
ately  this  good  Samaritan  was  on  her  way,  and  found  ''Old  Johnny" 


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FLY    MAEEfiT.  231 

almost  dead.  The  seryiccs  of  an  old  honest  colored  man  were  se- 
cured, and  the  old  man  was  removed  carefully  to  his  home,  where, 
under  faithful  nursing  and  the  ancient  vigor  of  his  constitution,  he 
soon  recovered  his  usual  health  and  haunts  at  the  market.  He  first 
visited  Mrs.  Brownell,  and  kindly  thanked  her ;  at  the  same  time, 
he  said,  in  a  sort  of  confidential,  mysterious  warning,  ''  Fair  lady, 
you  will  never  regret  this  act  of  kindness.  Many  passed  and  pit- 
ied me;  none,  however,  but  the  *Fair  Lady'  would  care  for  me." 
And  again  he  earnestly  said,  *' The  *Pair  Lady'  shall  never  regret' 
it."  "  No,  Johnny,"  said  Mrs.  B.,  "  I  never  regret  doing  a  deed  of 
humanity."  **No,  no,  *Fair  Lady,'  "  said  Johnny,  "  I  mean — I  will 
give  you  all" — and  he  stopped  a  moment,  to  think  whether  he  had 
not  said  enough,  but  finished  with — **  What  I  have  never  dared  to 
touch."  Mrs.  B.  thought  no  more  of  this,  until  Johnny  was  missing 
for  several  days  from  the  market,  when  she  proceeded  up  to  his  un- 
derground lodgings,  and  sure  enough,  Johnny  was  there  lying  upon 
his  death-bed,  as  it  afterwards  proved.  He  quickly  recognized  her, 
with  an  expression,  "  Heaven  be  thanked  for  this !  My  prayer  is 
granted.  Again  I  see  the  *  Fair  Lady,'  to  tell  her  that  my  time  is 
short  in  this  world.  To  my  knowledge,  I  have  no  relatives,  and  I 
want  proper  assistance  to  make  a  will."  Mrs.  B.  said  to  him, 
**  Johnny,  what  have  you  to  leave,  that  you  should  wish  to  make  a 
will  ?"  Johnny  turned  on  his  side,  with  a  groan,  saying,  "There" — 
pointing  to  a  couple  of  very  old  seaman's  chests,  which  were  almost 
hidden,  from  sight  by  the  old  sail-cloth,  iron,  and  rough  fire-wood — 
"There,  in  those  old  chests,  and  a  large  covered  pot,  which  lies  buried 
beneath  that  hearth — all  their  contents  I  shall  bequeath  to  you, 
*  Fair  Lady.'  I  told  you  you  would  never  regret  your  kindness  to 
*01d  Johnny  Day.'" 

Mrs.  B.  thought  these  might  contain  the  gatherings  of  the  many 
years  around  the  Old  Fly  Market,  and  likely  not  more  than  enough 
to  have  him  decently  buried ;  but,  to  satisfy  "  Old  Johnny,"  the  will 
was  made,  and  pro|>erly  drawn  up,  by  his  dictation— recorded  in 
the  Surrogate's  oflfice,  and  dated  the  4th  day  of  December,  1819. 

However,  before  "Johnny"  died,  he  wished  to  disclo.se  something, 
which  appeared  to  greatly  disturb  his  mind;  and  to.  his  colored 
nurse  he  several  times,  in  detached  sentences,  commenced  to  unfold 
that  he  knew  where  "  hoards  of  silver  coin,  bars  of  gold  and  doub- 
loons, and  jewels  of  vast  value,  lie  buried — enough  to  fill  twenty 
chests  like  those ;  but  I  cannot,  I  must  not,  reveal  it  now.  I  will — 
I  will  before  I  die." 

"  He  had  some  horror  when  speaking  of  it,"  said  his  old  nurse ; 
*'  but  I  believe  be  intended,  and  tried  to  do  so,  when  he  was  so  far 
gone  that  his  speech  was  inaudible."    This  was  about  the  substance 


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232 


FLY  MARKET. 


of  all  that  "Old  Johnny"  oyer  reyealed;  although  there  were  some 
people  who  thought  he  had  been  an  old  pirate,  and  that  before  he 
died  he  made  such  a  confession ;  but  this  was  not  so,  as  the  old 
negro  nurse  was  truth  itself. 

The  will  was  opened,  and  in  it  was  found,  he  had  bequeathed  all 
his  property,  of  all  kinds,  which  proved  to  be  about  $35,000,  in 
solid  cash,  besides  other  valuables,  to  the  fair,  kind,  and  Christian 
lady,  Mrs.  Brownell,  the  mother  of  the  well-known  and  highly-es- 
teemed Judge  J.  Sherman  Brownell,  who  so  honestly  inherits  those 
good  qualities  once  possessed  by  his  parents. 

On  the  26th  of  April  of  this  year,  (1819,)  a  return  of  all  the  butch- 
ers who  were  licensed  was  made,  when  a  resolution  was  passed, 
"That  they  be  licensed  agreeably  to  the  returns  of  the  Deputy 
Clerks  of  tiie  different  markets ;  and  that  the  price  of  license  be  re- 
duced to  one  dddar.^^ 

Two  years  after,  the  Deputy  Clerk  reported  the  following  for 
license: 


1.  William  Pullis. 

29.  Vacant. 

2.  Nicholas  Steel. 

30.  William  Winter. 

3.  Matthias  Smith. 

31.  John  Whitehead. 

4.  George  Byerson. 

32.  George  Ewen. 

5.  Vacant. 

88.  Martin  Silber. 

6.  John  Chappel. 

84.  Harvey  Lyon. 

7.  Vacant. 

8.      Do. 

86.  William  Warlow. 

9.  John  Bridle. 

87.  Henry  Shop. 

10.  Vacant. 

38.  Eliphalet  Wheeler. 

11.      Do. 

39.  John  Norman. 

12.      Do. 

40.  Willet  Cornell. 

13.      Do. 

41.  Andrew  C.  Wheeler. 

14.  Thomas  Gibbons. 

42.  Peter  Wilt. 

15.  Vacant. 

43.  Daniel  Burtnett. 

16.  Zavier  Broadway. 

44.  John  Nash. 

17.  Vacant. 

45.  Henry  Marsh. 

18.      Do. 

46.  David  Marsh. 

19.      Do. 

47.  Edward  Patton. 

20.  John  Hyde. 

48.  William  Reynolds. 

21.  Vacant. 

49.  Andrew  Fisher. 

22.      Do. 

60.  John  Doughty. 

23.  John  Abeel. 

51.  William  Patton. 

24  and  25.  Scale  and  Passage. 

52.  James  Carr. 

26.  Christian  Truss. 

53.  John  Stamler. 

27.  James  Wright. 

54.  John  Perrin. 

28.  Vac4int. 

55.  George  S.  Messerve. 

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FLT  MARKET.  233 

56.  Christian  Stamler.  65.  Lanning  Ferris. 

57.  Effingham  Marsh.  66.  Joseph  0.  Bogert. 

58.  William  Messerve.  67.  Daniel  Winship,  Jr. 

59.  Michael  Crawbnek.  68.  George  Q.  Messerve. 

60.  William  Fester.  69.  Daniel  Winship. 

61.  Cornelius  Schuyler.  70.  John  Fell. 

62.  Nat.  Underhill.  71.  David  Seaman. 

63.  Albert  Fisher.  72.  George  Manolt. 

64.  Elnathan  Underhill. 

Many  of  the  stands  are  found  vacant  at  this  period ;  and  one  year 
later,  more  than  one-half  of  the  butchers  and  others  had  left  this 
fiunous  old  market,  never  more  to  return. 

Biit  we  are  loth  yet  to  part  company  with  this  ancient  relic  of 
"  by-^ne  times,"  which  had  lived  so  long  in  the  history  of  our  city ; 
known  and  fed  so  many  generations  of  almost  all  the  civilized  na- 
tions of  the  world.  In  childhood  it  had  first  appeared  with  a  very 
small  covering  to  shelter  and  accommodate  its  original  visitors,  who 
daily  passed  along  at  a  "  slow  and  sure"  pace  towards  it,  wearing 
huge  breeches  and  pockets  capacious  enough  to  contain  a  week's 
stores  when  in  danger  of  short  supplies;  and  while  the  trade  was 
progressing  for  the  season's  supplies  of  kale  and  cabbage,  their  old 
dingy  meerschaum  was  replenished  with  that  then  common  tveedj  to 
be  whiffed  away  in  assisting  their  thinking  organs  in  the  prosecu- 
tion of  a  satisfactory  bargain.  Although  many  changes  of  authority, 
with  rebuildings  and  additions  to  the  Vley^  yet  these  old  Dutchmen 
held  fast  to  their  old  customs,  manners,  and  language,  until  time 
has  found  them  merged  into  the  English,  French,  German,  with  a 
few  of  other  nations,  to  be  at  last  called  and  known  as  New  Yorkers. 

Two  years  after  the  war  of  1812  had  commenced,  ^'  the  scarcity 
of  specie,  and  the  drains  made  upon  the  banks,  induced  a  suspension 
of  specie  payments,  which  continued  until  the  first  Monday  in  July, 
1817.  The  want  of  specie  and  small  change  for  a  circulating  medium 
induced  the  Corporation  to  cause  to  be  issued  a  substitute,  in  the 
shape  of  paper  money,  in  6|,  12 J,  25,  and  50  cent  bills,  to  the  amount 
of  one  hundred  thousand  dollars;  signed  by  John  Pintard,  Thomas 
Franklin,  and  William  M'Neal;  which  bills  being  endowed  with 
public  confidence,  passed  current  in  all  payments,  and  facilitated 
business.'** 

These  Corporation  bills,  however,  were  not  sufficient  for  the  usual 
wants,  and  many  tradesmen  also  issued  their  own  bills ;  but  glad 
enough  were  all  classes  when  the  time  was  approaching  for  the  gen- 
eral use  of  specie  again.  The  butchers  and  all  others  who  stood  in 
the  markets  promised,  through  the  *'  Press,"  to  sell  '*  for  one  week 
•  Goodrich's  PIctare  of  K.  T.,  p.  102. 


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FLY  MARKET. 


tiodve  per  cent,  cheaper  than  they  have  done,"  by  way  of  welcoming 
the  recommencement  of  the  silver  age.  **  Silver  is  silver — ^and  chaff 
is  chaff/'  said  they. 

The  city  soon  after  became  flooded  with  the  bills  of  the  country 
banks,  which  at  that  period  stood  upon  very  slender  foundations ; 
some  of  which  were  every  few  weeks  or  months  stopping  specie  pay- 
ments or  closing  for  a  period;  then  with  their  agents  buying  up 
their  bills  for  25  or  50  cents  on  a  dollar,  while  others  stopped  en- 
tirely, and  defrauding  thousands  of  poor  mechanics  and  others.  In 
1819  it  had  become  so  intolerable  that  a  large  meeting  of  the  butch- 
ers of  this  city  was  held  on  Tuesday,  22d  June  of  that  year,  at  which 
they  passed  several  resolutions ;  one  of  which  was,  **  That  after  the 
30th  instant  they  will  receive  no  country  bank-notes  that  are  be- 
low par  in  New  York." 

In  the  mean  time  provisions  of  all  kinds  had  become  scarce  and 
high,  and  so  continued  for  several  years.  The  prices  of  cattle  varied 
from  10  to  15  dollars  per  cwt.  from  1814  to  1820,  Meat  at  retail 
sold  as  high  as  2s.  6d.  per  pound,  and  even  '^  rough-fat "  sold  at  16 
to  18  pence  per  pound.  In  1815  the  milkmen  come  out  in  the  press 
and  state,  that  "  in  consequence  of  the  high  price  of  fodder,  the  milk- 
men, after  the  1st  of  December,  have  agreed  to  charge  a  shilling  a 
quart  for  milk."* 

In  the  month  of  January  following,  '*  Hickory  wood  sold  at  23 
dollars  per  cord ;  oak,  fifteen — the  severe  frost  having  cut  off  all 
supplies ;"  and  in  the  same  month  of  the  next  year,  "  Flour  sells  for 
$16  per  barrel,  and  a  further  advance  is  apprehended." 

The  February  following,  "A  vessel  has  lately  arrived  from  Bel- 
fast with  562  firkins  of  butter,  200  of  lard,  50  barrels  of  beef,  54  do. 
of  pork,  and  a  quantity  of  potatoes ;"  and  in  the  month  of  December 
following,  the  "Gazette"  states:  "  If  there  are  any  hogs  yet  remain- 
ing in  the  country,  now  is  the  time  to  bring  them  to  the  New  York 
markets,  as  the  price  is  from  ten  to  eleven  dollars  a  hundred,  which 
has  most  of  this  season  been  their  current  prices."t 

The  number  of  animals  killed  and  exposed  for  sale  in  this  market 
during  the  months  of  January,  February,  March,  and  April,  in  the 
year  1816,  was  reported  as  follows: 


Shoep. 

CaUle. 

Calves. 

Hoge. 

January,    - 

1,544 

671 

225 

220 

Febrnary, 

-    1,066 

572 

485 

158 

March, 

554 

569 

1.164 

157 

April,    - 

501 

463 

1,948 

134 

Total,        -      3,665 
*  Gazette,  November  30. 


2,275         3,822  669 

t  December  12, 1817. 


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FLY   MARKET.  235 

In  the  year  1818  another  report  shows  all  the  animals  sold  at  the 
four  principal  markets,  from  January  Ist  to  September  30, 1818 : 

Cattle         Calves.  Sheep.  Hoga 

Ply  Market,        -        4,402        9,105        19,154        1,725 
Washington,  -        -    3,168        5,539        14,412  605 

Catharine,  -        3,616        5,210        14,384  332 

Centre,  ...       617        1,186  4,857  60 


Total,        •     11,913      21,040        52,307        2,722 

"  The  above  is  a  tme  copy  of  the  returns  of  the  Deputy  Clerks  of 
the  different  markets/' 

The  subject  of  removing  this  market-place  from  Maiden  Lane  had 
begun  several  years  before  it  was  accomplished. 

Petitions  for  and  against  it  were  presented  at  intervals;  some 
said:  *'It  was  an  unfit  place,  being  over  a  sewer,  which  in  the  sum- 
mer-time is  considered  very  unhealthy ;  that  it  blocked  up  the  street, 
80  much  so,  that  mercantile  business  was  partially  stopped."  And 
others,  again,  "  Because  its  trade  was  decreasing  f  and  no  doubt  this 
latter  was  the  greatest  cause,  as  the  new  Washington  Market  was 
beginning  to  be  the  attraction,  both  for  the  country  people  on  the 
North  River  side,  and  great  numbers  of  our  citizens.  In  Janu- 
ary,  1816,  a  committee  reported  on  the  expediency  of  removing  it^ 
and  ''that  the  ground  at  Beekman's  Slip,  Front  Street,  Crane's 
Wharf,  and  East  River,  should  be  the  site  fixed  upon;"  which  was 
adopted,  (by  a  vote  of  12  to  5,)*  but  not  carried  out  at  this  period; 
and  no  doubt  the  cause  was,  that  more  opposition  had  been  made  to 
it  than  had  been  expected,  especially  from  the  press.  The  Gazette, 
August  19, 1819,  has  rather  a  sensible  "  communication  "  upon  the 
subject,  which  says :  "  The  public  mind  has  been  long  occupied  with 
the  question — Ought  the  Fly  Market  to  be  removed?  The  question 
appears  to  be  at  rest  by  a  resolution  passed  by  our  Corporation  to 
remove  it  to  Crane's  Wharf.  This  resolve  has  not  been  put  into 
execution ;  nor,  unless  my  judgment  is  extremely  erroneous,  is  it  at 
all  likely  it  will  be.  Perhaps  the  question  never  was  discussed  with 
so  much  obstinacy  as  it  is  at  this  time  in  the  Common  Council. 

"The  enormous  sum  required  for  the  completion  of  the  project,  the 
pressure  of  the  times,  the  difiSciilticj?  with  the  owners  of  property, 
the  advantages  to  accrue  to  the  Corporation  by  selling  the  property 
prepared  for  the  market,  are  urged  with  vehemence  on  the  one  side ; 
while  the  other,  with  equal  warmth,  call  for  its  removal  by  every 
consideration  of  their  high  and  responsible  stations  as  guardians  of 
the  public  health,  and  solicitous  for  the  public  good.  The  present 
*  N.  T.  Spectator,  January  3. 


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FLY  MARKET. 

Bite  of  the  Fly  Market  is  undoubtedly  best  suited  for  the  conven- 
ience of  citizens,  as  the  whole  community  south  of  it  are  supplied 
there.  The  main  objection  to  its  present  situation  is  its  being  so 
confined  by  the  adjacent  houses  as  to  render  it  unhealthy,  by  the 
unavoidable  collection  of  filth  in  a  narrow  street,  and  want  of  a 
ft-ee  circulation  of  air." 

The  Grand  Jury,  in  the  following  month  of  September,  presented 
it  as  a  nuisance,  and  say  in  their  report,  that  "  this  market  is  built 
over  a  common  sewer,  conducting  the  wfliter  from  Maiden  Lane  and 
the  adjoining  streets  to  the  East  River.  The  sewer  has  no  cover- 
ing under  the  meat  market,  between  Pearl  and  Front  Streets ;  but 
the  floor  of  the  market,  which  is  loosely  laid,  is  taken  up  whenever 
it  is  necessary  to  cleanse  it.  On  the  sides  of  the  market  are  a 
number  of  apertures  into  this  sewer,  which  a.re  receptacles  of  filth 
and  garbage  from  the  taverns,  fruit-stands,  and  cook-shops  a(^oining 
thereto,  creating  offensive  and  pestilential  matter,  and  infecting  the 
atmosphere  with  the  most  nauseous  vapors  at  this  season  of  the 
year.  But  although  a  sense  of  duty  compels  the  Grand  Jury  to 
present  this  market  as  a  nuisance,  they  are  pleased  to  avow  that  it  is 
in  as  cleanly  a  state  as  its  confined  situation  will  admit,  but  which 
forces  on  them  the  conviction  that  this  market  ought  to  be  removed 
to  a  site  more  favorable  to  cleanliness  and  comfort. '^ 

This  presentation  of  the  Grand  Jury,  however,  had  no  effect  with 
the  Market  Committee,  who,  on  the  following  24th  of  January,  re- 
ported against  the  removal ;  and,  in  answer  to  the  several  reasons 
urged  as  causes  for  the  removal  of  this  market,  they  say :  '*  Bat 
your  Committee  cannot  perceive  any  unfitness  for  the  public  ac^ 
commodation,  or  any  unhealthiness  in  the  present  site  of  this  mar- 
ket, nor  any  other  objection  to  it,  that  would  not  apply  with  nearly 
equal,  if  not  greater,  force  to  any  other  situation.  They  are  also 
of  opinion  that,  if  this  market  were  removed,  the  inhabitants  of  the 
southwesterly  part  of  the  city  would  immediately  require  a  new 
market  to  be  erected  for  their  accommodation  somewhere  to  the 
southward  and  westward  of  Maiden  Lane.  They  would  then  say, 
and  with  great  force,  that  the  Oswego  Market,  the  Exchange  Mar- 
ket, and  the  Fly  Market  had  all  been  taken  away  from  them,  and 
that  another  ought  to  be  erected  for  their  convenience." 

The  business,  however,  decreased  so  fast,  that  the  butchers  in  the 
Upper  Market  petition  on  the  27th  of  May  following,  and  wish  to 
be  removed  to  some  part  of  the  Lower  or  Country  Market;  stating 
that  "but  little  business  is  done  in  that  part  of  the  market."  They 
followed  it  up  the  next  year,  in  the  month  of  February,  stating  that 
they  "have  several  times  prayed  to  be  removed;  but  as  their  pray- 


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FLY   MARK£T.  237 

era  have  hitherto  been  in  vain,  though  they  have,  as  they  believe, 
been  foonded  in  justice  and  equity,  they  have  bowed  in  silent  sor- 
row to  your  honored  will.  '  But  as  they  are  now  encouraged  by 
many  of  their  much  respected  and  sympathetic  brethren  in  the 
Lower  Market^  who  will  make  a  voluntary  sacrifice  of  personal  in- 
terest to  subserve  public  good,  they  appeal  with  confidence,  and 
humbly  pray  that  your  Honorable  Body  will  be  pleased  to  embrace 
the  opportunity  offered  by  the  late  fire,  (which  destroyed  aU  the 
buildings  on  the  proposed  site  J  of  erecting  a  public  market,  and  that 
the  butchers  at  present  in  Fly  Market  may  be  permitted  to  remove 
to  and  occupy  the  stands  in  said  market/' 

The  farmers  and  other  inhabitants  of  Kings  County,  L.  I.,  who 
attended  this  market,  also  "  asked  to  discontinue  it."  A  remon- 
strance from  several  of  the  property  owners  and  store-keepers  was 
also  at  that  time  presented  against  its  removal ;  but  the  fate  of  the 
Old  Fly  Market  was  soon  after  decided,  and  the  Fulton  Market 
was  ordered  to  be  built. 

Before  this  decision  was  made,  however,  an  interesting  display 
took  place  in  the  city,  part  of  which  pertained  to  this  market.  One 
of  its  most  prominent  butchers,  a  great  friend  and  co-worker  of  the 
New  York  County  Agricultural  Society,  purchased  a  number  of 
prize  cattle  at  one  of  their  Fairs  held  at  a  place  called  "  Mount 
Vernon,"  (but  previously  known  as  "  Smith's  Folly,")  at  that  day  a 
little  above  "  Cato's,"  on  the  East  Eiver,  (now  nearly  on  a  line  of 
Sixty-first  Street,)  on  the  18th  day  of  March,  1821. 

"  'Premium  GatUe.^ — ^Twenty  best  cattle  that  have  ever  been  ex- 
hibited in  this  city,  and  which  obtained  the  first  premium — rvalue 
$100— on  the  18th  inst.,  at  Mount  Vernon,  will  be  offered  for  sale 
on  Saturday,  the  17th  inst.,  in  Fly  Market,  by  the  subscriber,  assist- 
ed by  many  of  his  worthy  friends,  who  have,  in  the  most  handsome 
and  generous  manner,  offered  him  their  services;  and  he  hopes  that 
his  efforts  to  promote  the  agricultural  interest  of  this  State  will 
meet  the  approbation  and  support  of  a  magnanimous  and  generous 
public.  T.  Gibbons."* 

After  these  animals  had  been  dressed,  an  average  of  182^  9>s. 
of  rough-fat  was  taken  from  each  animal,  and  in  forty  butchers' 
carts,  handsomely  decorated,  "  was  carried  through  the  principal 
streets  of  the  ci^;"  while  "the  'Star-spangled  Banner'  was  dis- 
played, and  the  premiums  of  silver  pitchers,  Ac,  exhibited  in  the 
first  cart.*'  Mr.  Gibbons  announced  through  the  press,  "  The  price 
of  this  beef  will  be  one  shilling  a  pound."  A  card  from  the  Debt- 
ors' Prison  announced,  on  the  19th,  "  With  gratitude,  the  prisoners 

*  •'Gftzette,"  March  16, 1821. 


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238  FLY   MARKET. 

in  the  Debtors'  Jail  acknowledge  the  receipt  of  a  plentiful  donation 
of  *  Premium  Bee{^  from  Mr.  Gibbons,  and  the  joint  Society  of 
Butchers  of  the  Fly  Market/' 

The  days  of  the  existence  of  the  Old  Vlie  had  become  numbered, 
and  brought  the  period  when  the  owners  of  the  fourteen  stands,  pur- 
chased in  1796,  wanted  to  know  what  compensation  the  Corporation 
intended  to  give  them,  in  lieu  of  those  they  intended  to  take  from 
them.  So  they  presented  their  claim  in  the  shape  of  a  petition, 
dated  13th  December,  1821,  "stating  that  the  Corporation,  in  the 
year  1796,  caused  fourteen  new  stands  in  the  Fly  Market  to  be  sold 
at  auction ;  and  that  they  were  purchased  by  the  petitioners,  or 
those  from  whom  the  petitioners  have  bought  them.  That  they  un- 
derstood the  Corporation  intend  pulling  down  and  removing  said 
market;  against  which  they  protest,  and  request  that  no  measures 
be  taken  therein,  until  a  compensation  is  made  to  the  petitioners  for 
the  loss  they  will  incur  by  the  removal  of  said  market  f  which  was 
referred,  and  no  action  taken  upon  it.  It,  however,  brought  forth 
a  resolution,  on  the  2l8t  January  following,  from  their  friend, 
Alderman  Abraham  Valentine,  "That  the  voluntary  relinquishment 
of  fourteen  butchers  to  certain  stands  in  Fly  Market,  which  they 
claim  to  have  purchased  from  the  Corporation,  shall  not  be  con- 
strued by  the  Common  Council  as  invalidating  their  claims  to  com- 
pensation.''   Which  was  adopted. 

The  next  morning's  (22d)  "paper"  says:  "The  Fly  Market,  or,  as 
our  forefathers  used  to  call  it,  the  VUe,  is  to  be  deserted  this  day. 
The  bustle  commenced  yesterday,  and  many  an  epicure,  who  for 
years  has  been  habitually  fatting  upon  the  good  things  of  the  Ply, 
will  hereafter  be  gratified  by  visiting  the  Pulton  Market;  and,  jj- 
though  he  cannot  dispense  with  his  eating  habits,  he  will  soon  be- 
come reconciled  to  his  new  and  daily  visits  to  the  more  extensive 
one  now  brought  into  use." 

Several  of  the  butchers  continued  their  business  in  the  market- 
house,  until  the  tearing  down  over  their  heads  drove  them  out. 
Mr.  John  Seaman  (now  of  stand  No.  34,  Centre  Market,)  was  at 
that  time  assisting  his  father,  David  Seaman,  (the  occupant  of  No. 
71.)  and  engaged  in  making  sale  of  a  piece  of  meat  to  a  captain  of 
a  vessel,  and  while  weighing  it,  a  piece  of  the  roof  fell  down  be- 
tween the  traders;  which  soon  closed  the  last  sale  made  in  this 
once  famous  old  market,  after  having  been  established  one  hundred 
and  twenty^three  years  in  one  place. 

This  settled  the  "Old  Market-Place,"  but  the  claims  which  the 
owners  of  the  14  stands  bought  of  the  Corporation  in  1796  were 
yet  to  be  settled.    With  this  purpose,  on  the  following  10th  day  of 


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FLY  MARKET.  289 

June,  a  communication  was  received  by  the  Counsel  of  the  Board, 
stating  that  George  Manolt,  David  Seaman,  and  Albert  Fisher  had 
commenced  action  in  the  Supreme  Court  against  the  Corporation  for 
the  damages  which  they  have  sustained  by  being  deprived  of  their 
8talls  in  the  Old  Fly  Market,  in  consequence  of  its  being  pulled 
down.  Whereupon  the  Counsel  was  directed  to  enter  his  appear- 
ance for  the  Corporation,  and  to  defend  the  suit.  It  was  also  re- 
ferred to  the  Law  Committee,  '*  to  employ  such  additional  counsel 
as  they  may  judge  proper." 

This  suit  did  not,  however,  then  take  place,  as  there  were  some 
hopes  and  promises  of  settling  it  with  the  Corporation ;  but  after 
waiting  two  years,  it  was  agreed  that  but  one  should  go  on,  and  the 
suit  was  entered  in  the  name  of  David  Seaman  against  the  City,  be- 
fore the  Honorable  Samuel  R.  Betts ;  having  as  Counsel  Peter  A. 
Jay  and  Thomas  A.  Emmet  for  plain tiflFs;  and  for  the  Corporation, 
M.  Ulshoeffer,  D.  B.  Ogden,  and  William  Slosson,  Esq.,  as  Counsel. 
On  the  19th  of  July,  1824,  the  Counsel  to  the  Board  reported: 
"That  on  the  15th  instant,  the  cause  of  *  Seaman'  against  the  Cor- 
poration (one  of  what  are  commonly  called  the  butcher  causes)  was 
tried,  and  on  the  16th  a  verdict  was  found  for  plaintiff  of  $600." 

This  was  followed  with  a  petition  from  the  other  plaintiffs  on  the 
25th  of  October,  of  which  the  following  is  an  extract:  *'That  your 
petitioners  therefore  caused  certain  suits  to  be  commenced  against 
the  Corporation,  supposing  that  if  their  title  should  be  once  settled 
in  either  of  these  suits,  the  Corporation  would  no  longer  contest 
their  claim  to  compensation ;  that  one  of  these  suits  was  tried  on  the 
16th  of  July  last,  when  a  verdict  was  found  against  the  Corpora- 
tion. On  this  verdict  judgment  has  been  rendered — ^no  exception 
was  taken  to  the  charge  of  the  judge,  which  was  not  favorable  to 
your  petitioners — ^no  motion  has  been  made  for  a  new  trial — ^no  writ 
of  error  has  been  brought,  but  the  Counsel  for  the  Corporation  have 
acquiesced  in  this  decision.  Your  petitioners  therefore  suppose  that 
the  question  of  titles  may  be  considered  as  no  longer  in  controversy, 
and  that  the  amount  of  compensation  due  to  your  petitioners  respect- 
ively only  remains  to  be  ascertained.  It  appear^  to  your  petitioners, 
that  in  this  state  of  affairs,  it  cannot  be  necessary  or  desirable  to  in- 
crease expense  by  protracted  litigation,  but  that  an  amicable  ar- 
rangement may  now  be  made." 

This  subject  came  before  the  Finance  Committee,  who  reported 
on  the  following  22d  of  November,  which  concludes  in  these  words: 
"On  the  trial  of  one  of  these  suits,  a  verdict  of  $600  was  found  for 
the  plaintiff,  and  under  all  the  circumstances  of  that  case,  your  Com- 
mittee did  not  deem  it  advisable  to  recommend  any  further  defence 


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240  PI'Y   MARKET. 

in  those  suits ;  since  that  trial,  the  petition  now  reported  on  was 
presented  to  the  Board,  and  referred  to  your  Committee,  and  they 
have  had  interviews  with  the  petitioners  and  their  Counsel,  Peter 
A.  Jay,  Esq.,  and  have  treated  respecting  an  amicable  settlement  of 
the  matters  in  question. 

*'The  result  is,  that  your  Committee  have  concluded  to  recommend 
to  the  Board  to  allow  to  the  petitioners  the  amount  paid  for  the 
stalls  which  they  held  at  the  time  the  market  was  pulled  down,  to- 
gether with  the  interest  from  that  time  to  the  present. 

'^And  the  petitioners  have  agreed  to  accept  this  compensation, 
together  with  their  expenses;  which  also  your  Committee  have 
agreed  should  be  allowed  to  them.  Your  Committee  have  been  in- 
duced to  recommend  this  liberal  settlement  towards  the  petitioners, 
not  only  because  of  the  verdict  of  the  jury  before  referred  to,  but  prin- 
cipally from  the  peculiar  hardship  of  the  case  of  some  of  the  peti- 
tioners, who  paid  very  large  sums  of  money  for  these  stalls  to  others 
from  whom  they  purchased,  and  not  long  before  the  market  was 
pulled  down.  It  is  true  that  this  Board  have  not  been  parties  to 
these  transfers  in  but  few  instances ;  and  in  none,  as  your  Commi^ 
tee  believe,  also,  they  ever  countenanced  the  idea  that  the  purchaser 
was  to  hold  beyond  the  life  of  the  original  purchaser  by  auction. 
But  these  are  questions  that  your  Committee  do  not  mean  to  enlarge 
upon;  they  have  met  the  claimants  in  a  spirit  of  liberality  and 
amity,  and  have  concluded  to  recommend  a  compromise  to  the 
Board,  as  before  stated,  and  with  the  express  understanding  on  both 
sides  that,  in  case  this  proposition  should  not  be  accepted  by  the 
Board,  neither  this  report,  nor  such  proposition,  nor  anything  that 
has  taken  place  in  regard  thereto,  shall  be  considered  as  prejudging 
any  right  on  either  side.  The  case  of  Seaman  being  disposed  of  as 
above  stated,  the  claims  of  thirteen  of  the  stalls  in  question  alone 
remain ;  and  the  annexed  statement  shows  the  numbers  of  the  stalls 
sold  at  auction,  which  the  petitioners  either  bought  then  or  pur- 
chased since ;  it  also  shows  the  names  of  the  petitioners ;  the  amount 
paid  for  each  stall;  the  amount  of  interest  on  each  sum;  the  total 
of  each  claim ;  and  adding  the  expenses  agreed  to  be  allowed  as  be- 
fore stated,  it  makes  a  total  sum  of  $10,272.46. 

"  Your  Committee  therefore  offers  for  the  consideration  of  the 
Board  the  following  resolution : 

''Besdved,  That  in  case  all  the  petitioners  shall,  on  or  before  the 
next  meeting  of  this  Board,  make  and  execute  a  proper  release  or 
releases  in  the  premises,  which  shall  be  considered  sufficient  by  the 
Finance  Committee,  (who  may  require  security  in  any  instance  that 
they  may  think  proper,)  the  Comptroller  shall  report  a  warrant  in 


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PLY   MARKET. 


241 


fkvor  of  Peter  A.  Jay,  Esq.,  for  the  total  sam  above  named;  and 
which  shall  be  delivered  to  Mr.  Jay  on  his  delivering  to  the  Comp- 
troller the  said  release  and  his  receipt  for  the  amounts."  Signed, 
Reuben  Munson,  William  H.  Ireland,  Henry  J.  Wycoff,  and  William 
Burtsell. 

The  "Board''  approved  the  report,  adopted  the  resolution,  and 
the  whole  was  acceded  to  by  all  the  petitioners  who  represented  these 
various  stands  at  this  date,  as  follows : 

Na  Names. 

59.  William  Foster,  - 

60.  Michael  Crawbuck, 

61.  Cornelius  Schuyler, 

62.  Nath.  Underbill, 

63.  Albert  Fisher,     - 

64.  Elnathan  Underhill, 

65.  Lanning  Ferris,  - 

66.  Joseph  0.  Bogart, 

67.  Daniel  Winship,  Jr. 

68.  George  Messerve, 
Daniel  Winship,  - 
John  Pell,  -  -  - 
David  Seaman,  - 
George  Manolt,  - 


69. 
70. 
71. 
72. 


C<»tiii£. 

Int. 

iDterat 

Total 

•X200 

$500  00 

1100  62 

$600  62 

-  210 

525  00 

105  65 

630  65 

-  175 

487  50 

88  04 

525  54 

-  150 

376  00 

75  47 

450  47 

-  180 

450  00 

90  57 

540  57 

-  280 

700  00 

140  88 

840  88 

-  165 

412  50 

83  25 

495  52 

-  310 

775  00 

155  85 

930  85 

-  170 

425  00 

85  53 

510  53 

•  320 

800  00 

161  00 

961  00 

-  205 

512  50 

103  15 

615  65 

-  285 

712  50 

143  40 

855  90 

-  (Test 

case  at  law  settled.) 

•  530 

1,325  00 

266  65 

1,591  65 

For  expenses,  taxes,  costs,  Ac,  allowed, 


Settlement  for  the  whole  amount. 


$9,549  83 
-    -        722  63 

-    $10,272  46 

Thus  terminated  the  career  of  the  once  famous  "  Old  Fly  Market ;" 
but  many  old  citizens  and  merchants  near  it  had  become  so  partial 
to  the  name,  that  they  continued  to  use  it  even  after  the  last  vestige 
of  the  old  nmrket-house  had  disappeared.  An  old  and  a  well-known 
highly  respected  firm,  yet  in  existence,  at  that  period  says  in  an  ad- 
vertisement: "Just  published  by  E.  &  Q.  W.  Blunt,  No.  147  Fly 
Market,  a  Chart  of  the  Harbor  of  New  York,  with  the  Coasts  of  Long 
Island  and  New  Jersey,  from  Fire  Island  to  Barnegat  Inlet,  Ac.*" 

In  concluding  the  history  of  this  market-place,  we  may  say  that, 
while  in  existence,  it  could  claim  the  merit  of  being  the  best,  and 
most  liberally  supplied  with  all  the  various  articles  used  for  human 
food,  in  the  United  States. 


Vol.  L— 16 


'  American,  Deeember  IS,  1823. 


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242  MEAL   OR   WALL   STREET   MARKET. 


"MEAL  OR  WALL  STREET  MARKET." 

On  the  4th  day  of  October,  1709,  "  the  inhabitants  of  the  East 
Ward  piititioned  for  liberty  to  erect  a  market-house  at  the  south 
end  of  Clark's  Slip,  at  the  east  end  of  Wall  Street;"  and  permission 
was  granted  to  them  "  to  erect  the  same  at  their  own  charge,  pro- 
vided it  be  finished  within  two  years  from  date." 

For  more  than  fifty  years  previous,  a  noted  tavern  had  been  kept 
near  where  this  market  was  to  be  established,  which  appears  to  have 
been  the  resort  of  country  people  from  Long  Island,  who  usually  put 
up  here  when  visiting  the  city.  It  was  the  first  house  inside  of  the 
wall  or  city  gate,  which  opened  on  the  present  line  of  Pearl  Street. 
This  tavern  was  established  by  Daniel  Litschoe,  who  died  about  the 
year  1660,  when  his  widow  continued  the  business  for  a  number  of 
years ;  but  having  become  advanced  in  life,  she  sold  her  property  to 
the  Jew  butcher,  Asser  Levy,  who  continued  it,*  and  (with  his  part- 
ner, Gerrit  Jansen  Roos,)  he  also  kept  the  neighboring  **  Public 
Slaughter-House."  After  that  period,  there  appears  to  have  been  a 
noted  public-house  kept  near  the  same  place.  The  old  Coffee-House 
afterwards  became  famous,  which  was  followed  by  the  celebrated 
"  Tontine,"  both  being  in  that  vicinity. 

This  market-place,  soon  after  its  erection,  became  rather  a  favor- 
ite place  for  the  merchants  to  meet  to  transact  their  business,  and  it 
has  not  lost  its  character  yet  on  that  point;  the  only  difference  is  a 
slight  change  In  the  business.  In  the  "  olden  time,"  "  all  negro  and 
Indian  slaves  that  are  let  out  to  hire,  within  this  city,  do  take  up 
their  standing  in  order  to  be  hired  at  the  marke^house  at  the  Wall 
Street  Slip,  until  such  time  as  they  are  hired,  whereby  all  persona 
may  know  where  to  hire  slaves  as  their  occasion  shall  require,  and 
all  masters  discover  where  their  slaves  are  so  hired  ;"t  and  now  a  very 
large  business  is  done  there  with  the  products  of  slave  labor. 

At  that  early  period  the  masters,  when  they  had  no  work  for  their 
slaves,  (many  of  whom  were  Indians,)  sent  them  to  this  market-place, 
where  they  were  obliged  to  wait  during  business  hours  until  hired, 
which  would  sometimes  be  by  the  day,  week,  or  month ;  however, 
they  were  occasionally  a  great  deal  of  trouble  to  their  masters  and 
employers,  no  doubt  in  consequence  of  ill-treatment,  neglect,  and 
being  improperly  cared  for ;  and,  of  course,  the  slaves  were  usually 

•  Valentine.  f  Records.  November  30, 1711 


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MEAL  OR  WALL  STREET  MARKET.  243 

laasy,  vicioiiB,  fhievish,  and  at  times  revengeful,  although  many  strin- 
gent orders  and  laws  were  made  to  keep  them  in  order.  As  early 
as  1690  they  were  not  allowed  to  cross  the  ferry  either  way,  as  it 
was  "Ordered  that  the  fferryman  shall  not  bringe  or  sett  over  any 
negroes  or  slaves  uppon  the  Sabbath  daye  without  a  tickett  from 
their  masters." 

In  1706  Gk>vemor  Cornbury  issued  the  following  proclamation: 
"  Whereas,  I  am  informed  that  several  negroes  in  Kings  County 
have  assembled  themselves  in  a  riotous  manner,  which,  if  not  pre- 
vented, may  prove  of  ill  consequence :  You,  the  Justice  of  the  Peace 
in  the  said  county,  are  hereby  required  and  commanded  to  take  all 
proper  methods  for  the  seizing  and  apprehending  all  such  negroes  as 
shall  be  found  to  be  assembled  in  such  manner  as  aforesaid,  or  have 
run  away  or  absconded  from  their  masters  or  owners,  whereby  there 
may  be  reasons  to  suspect  them  of  ill  practices  or  designs,  and  to 
secure  them  in  safe  custody ;  and  if  any  of  them  refuse  to  submit, 
then  i^Jire  upon  them,  hiU  or  destroy  them,  if  they  cannot  otherwise 
be  taken ;  and  for  so  doing  this  shall  be  your  sufficient  warrant. 
Given  under  my  hand,  at  F(yrt  Ann,  the  22d  day  of  July,  1706. 

"  COBNBUBY." 

Then  we  find,  in  the  year  1712,  a  great  excitement  was  made 
among  the  citizens  in  consequence  of  a  conspiracy  or  rising  of  the 
negro  slaves  in  this  city.  Horsmanden  says :  "On  the  7th  of  April, 
about  one  or  two  o'clock  in  the  morning,  the  house  of  Peter  Van 
Tilburgh  was  set  on  fire  by  the  negroes,  who  being  armed  with  guns, 
knives,  Ac,  killed  and  wounded  several  white  people  as  they  were 
coming  to  assist  in  extinguishing  the  flames.  Notice  thereof  being 
soon  carried  to  the  fort,  His  Excellency,  Governor  Hunter,  ordered 
a  cannon  to  be  fired  from  the  ramparts  to  alarm  the  town,  and  de- 
tached a  party  of  soldiers  to  the  fire,  at  whose  appearance  those  vil- 
lains immediately  fled,  and  made  their  way  out  of  town  as  fast  as  they 
could,  to  hide  themselves  in  the  woods  and  swamps.  In  their  flight 
they  also  killed  and  wounded  several  white  people ;  but  being  close- 
ly pursued,  some  concealed  themselves  in  barns,  and  others  sheltered 
in  the  swamps  or  woods,  which  being  surrounded  and  strictly  guard- 
ed till  the  morning,  many  of  them  were  then  taken.  Some,  finding 
no  way  for  their  escape,  shot  themselves.  The  end  of  it  was,  that  after 
these  foolish  wretches  had  murdered  eight  or  ten  white  people,  and 
some  of  the  confederates  had  been  their  own  executioners,  nineteen 
more  of  them  were  apprehended,  brought  npon  their  trials  for  a 
conspiracy  to  murder  the  people,  Ac,  and  were  convicted  and  exe- 
cuted; and  several  more  that  turned  evidence  were  transported." 

Governor  Hunter,  in  a  letter  dated  June  12,  (same  year,)  to  the 


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244  MEAL   OB    WALL  STBEfiX  MARKET. 

"  Lords  of  Trade/'  gives  the  following  particulars  eoncenung  it: 
"  I  mast  now  give  your  lordships  an  aocoont  of  a  bloody  conspiracy 
of  some  of  the  slaves  of  this  place  to  destroy  as  many  inhabitants 
as  they  could.  It  was  put  in  execution  in  this  manner:  Wh^n 
they  had  resolved  to  revenge  themselves  for  some  hard  usage  they 
apprehended  to  have  received  from  their  masters,  (for  I  can  find  no 
other  cause,)  they  agreed  to  meet  in  the  orchard  of  Mr.  Crook,  the 
middle  of  the  town ;  some  provided  with  fire-arms,  some  with  swords, 
and  others  with  knives  and  hatchets;  this  was  the  sixth  day  of 
April ;  the  time  of  meeting  was  about  twelve  or  one  o'clock  in  the 
night ;  when  about  three-and-twenty  of  them  were  got  togeather,  one 
Coffee  and  negro  slave  of  one  Van  Tilburgh  set  fire  to  an  out-house 
of  his  master's,  and  then  repairing  to  the  place  where  the  rest  were, 
they  all  sallyed  out-togeather  w^^  their  arms,  and  marched  to  the 
fire;  by  this  time  the  noise  of  fire  spreeding  through  the  town,  the 
people  began  to  flock  to  it;  upon  the  approach  of  severall,  the  slaves 
fired  and  killed  them ;  the  noise  of  the  guns  gave  the  allarm,  and 
some  escaping  their  shot,  soon  published  the  cause  of  the  fire,  whidi 
was  the  reason  that  not  above  nine  Christians  were  killed,  and 
about  five  or  six  wounded ;  upon  the  first  notice,  which  was  very 
soon  after  the  mischief  was  begun,  I  ordered  a  detachment  from  the 
Fort,  (Oeorge,)  under  a  proper  officer,  to  march  agltinst  them,  but  the 
slaves  made  their  retreat  into  the  woods,  by  the  favour  of  the  night; 
having  ordered  centries  the  next  day  in  the  most  proper  places  on 
the  Island  to  prevent  their  escape,  I  caused  the  day  following  the 
militia  of  this  town  and  of  the  County  of  Westchester  to  drive  the 
island,  and  by  this  means  and  strict  searches  in  the  town,  we  found 
all  that  put  the  design  in  execution ;  six  of  these  having  first  laid  vio- 
lent hands  upon  themselves,  the  rest  were  forthwith  brought  to  their 
tryal  before  y^  Justices  of  this  place,  who  are  authorized  by  act  of 
Assembly  to  hold  a  court  in  such  cases.  In  that  court  were  twenty* 
seven  condemned,  whereof  twenty-one  were  executed,  one  being  a 
woman  with  child,  her  execution  by  that  meanes  suspended ;  some 
were  burnt,  others  hanged,  one  broke  on  the  wheel,  and  one  hung 
a  live  in  chains  in  the  town.  One  Mars,  a  negro  man  slave  to 
one  Mr.  Regnier,  was  twice  indicts  and  ttoice  tryed,  and  again  ac- 
quitted, but  not  discharged ;  and  being  a  third  time  presented,  was 
transferred  to  the  Supream  Court,  and  there  tryed  and  convicted  on 
y^  same  evidence  on  his  two  former  tryals:  this  prosecution  was  car- 
ryed  on  to  gratify  some  private  pique  of  Mr.  Bickley's  against  Mr, 
Begnier,  a  gentleman  of  his  own  profession,  which  appearing  so  par* 
tial,  and  the  evidence  being  represented  to  me  as  very  defective, 
and  being  wholly  acquitted  of  ever  having  known  anything  of  the 


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MEAL  OB  WALL  STREET  MARKET.  245 

eonspirracj  by  the  negroe  witnesses,  I  thought  fit  to  reprieve  him  till 
Her  Miyestie's  pleasure  be  known  therein."* 

The  ''City  Records"  also  show  some  of  the  particulars,  and  the 
punishments  awarded  to  a  few  of  the  culprits,  of  which  the  follow- 
ing are  among  the  most  prominent  who  were  tried  and  convicted : 
Clause^  the  slave  of  Allen  Jarrott,  with  Qnacoo,  slave  of  Abraham 
Provoost,  and  Sam,  slave  of  Peter  Fauconieier ;  also  Robin,  who 
stabbed  his  master,  Adrian  Hoghlandt,  in  the  back,  and  killed  him : 
all  were  convicted  of  murder,  but  their  mode  of  punishment  appears 
quite  different.  Clause  was  ''broke  upon  a  wheel."  Bobin  was 
hung  in  chains  alive,  and  "  so  continue  without  any  sustenance  until 
he  be  dead."  Quacco  was  burnt,  and  Sam  was  hung.  Nicholas 
Rosevelt  also  had  a  slave  named  Tom,  who  was  "  burned  with  a 
slow  fire  until  he  be  dead  and  consumed  to  ashes,"  as  was  also  Ruth 
Shepard's  Tunis.  Ephraim  Pierson,  a  "constable  of  the  watch," 
was  badly  wounded  by  Jacob  Regnier's  Mars:  his  punishment  was 
to  "  be  stripped  from  the  middle  upwards  and  tyed  to  the  tail  of  a 
cart,  at  the  City  Hall,  and  be  drawn  from  thence  to  the  Broadway, 
and  from  thence  to  the  Custom-House ;  thence  to  Wall  Street,  and 
from  thence  to  the  City  Hall  again ;  and  that  he  be  whipped  upon 
the  naked  back,  ten  lashes  att  the  corner  of  every  street  he  shall 
pass,^nd  that  he  afterwards  be  discharged  from  his  imprisonment, 
paying  his  fees,  <!kc." 

The  Sheriff,  Francis  Harrison,  Esq.,  was  ordered  to  be  paid  £36 
lOs.  for  cost  of  "  iron-work,  gibbets,  cartage,  and  laborers,  fire- 
wood, and  other  materials  and  expenses  for  the  execution  of  sev- 
eral negro  slaves,  for  murders  by  them  committed  in  April  last." 

Negro  slaves,  when  they  suffered  death  for  committing  crime, 
were  not  always  a  total  loss  to  their  masters;  the  authorities  were 
usually  appealed  to,  through  petition,  for  the  amount  of  a  valua- 
tion made  by  persons  who  no  doubt  dealt  or  were  in  the  trayd; 
and  such  valuation  was  paid  by  Government. 

The  following  petition  on  this  subject  was  before  the  Board  Sep- 
tember 19,  1719,  asking  "for  payment  of  a  negro  belonging  to 
Hermannus  Burgher,blacksmith,who  is  to  suffer  death  for  burglary." 
"That  your  petitioner  is  a  poor,  aged,  and  lame  man,  and  hath 
nothing  whereby  he  may  sustain  himself  but  the  labor  of  a  negro 
man  slave,  named  Harry,  who  is  now  under  sentence  of  death,  and 
therefore,  as  your  petitioner  hath  reason  to  believe,  execution  will 
be  speedily  done.  But  your  petitioner  being  informed  that  there  is 
an  act  of  General  Assembly  in  force  for  allowance  of  a  certain 
sum  of  money  to  the  owners  of  such  slave  or  slaves  as  shall  be  le- 
*  CoL  Hiat,  ToL  t.,  p.  34L 


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246  MEAL   OB   WALL   STBEBT  KABKBT. 

gaily  put  to  death — he  therefore  prays  he  may  have  the  benefit  of 
the  said  act;  and  as  in  duty  bound,  &c.  Harjcany8  Buoeb." 

The  value  of  his  slave  was  referred  to  the  following  gentlemen, 
who  reported  as  follows :  ''  We,  Alburtus  Bosch  and  Nichlas  Maet- 
taysan,  being  desired  of  Harmanus  Burger  to  vallow  the  slave 
called  by  the  name  of  Herry,  now  in  prison,  are  of  opinion  that  he 
is  worth  sixty  pounds,  if  hee  was  to  be  bought  by  any  of  our  trayd: 
as  witnesses  our  hands,  &c.,  September  3, 1719.'^ 

Eight  years  after,  the  punishment  for  passing  false  bills  of  credit 
is  meted  out  to  a  couple  of  individuals  in  a  style  which  I  think 
would  deter  or  make  such  kind  of  businesd  very  unfashionable  at 
the  present  day.  "At  a  Supreme  Court  of  Judicature  held  at  the 
City  Hall  of  the  City  of  New  York,  the  fourth  of  December,  1727, 
were  presented  for  sentence  David  Wallace  and  David  Willson, 
having  at  the  last  Court  been  convicted  of  a  cheat,  in  passing  some 
bills  of  credit  of  the  Province  of  New  Jersey,  were  now  brought 
to  the  bar,  and  received  the  following  sentence^  viz. :  That  the  said 
David  Wallace  and  David  Willson  do  stand  in  the  pillory  between 
the  hours  of  ten  and  eleven  in  the  forenoon  of  the  same  day,  (12th 
inst.,)  and  after  that  be  placed  in  a  cart,  so  as  to  be  publickly  seen, 
with  halters  about  their  necks,  and  carted  thro'  the  most  publick 
streets  in  this  city ;  and  then  be  brought  to  the  public  Whipping- 
Post,  and  there  David  Wallis,  on  his  bare  back,  to  receive  thirty- 
nine  stripes,  and  David  Willson  twenty-eight  stripes.  And  within 
some  convenient  time  after,  the  Sheriff  shall  deliver  said  prisoners 
at  the  Ferry-House  in  Kings  County,  and  on  the  third  Tuesday  in 
January  next  they  shall  be  set  on  the  pillory,  and  then  Wallis  to  re> 
ceive  at  Flatbush  thirty-nine  stripes,  and  Willson  twenty-eight. 
Then  they  shall  be  conveyed  to  Jamaica,  in  Queens  County,  and 
there,  on  the  fourth  Tuesday  in  February,  to  stand  on  the  pillory, 
and  afterwards  each  of  them  to  receive  the  same  number  of  stripes. 
Then  to  be  conveyed  to  Westchester,  and  there,  on  the  fourth  Tues- 
day in  March,  to  stand  on  the  pillory,  and  then  at  the  Whipping- 
Post  Wallace  to  receive  twenty  stripes  on  the  bare  back,  and 
Willson  ten.  After  which,  at  the  end  of  King's  Bridge,  they  shall 
be  delivered  to  the  High  Sheriff  of  the  City  of  New  York,  and  from 
that  time,  Wallace  to  remain  in  prison  six  months,  and  Willson 
three  months.    And  then  each  to  be  discharged,  paying  their  fees!" 

The  Laws  of  1720  notice  this  market  as  the  Market-House  at 
Wall  Street  Slip;  and  the  "Proceedings"  on  the  16th  of  November, 
same  year,  order,  "That  the  neighborhood  of  the  WaU  Street 
Market-House  have  liberty  to  remove  the  said  market-house  higher 
up  into  the  said  street,  or  repair  it  where  it  now  stands,  at  their 


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HEAL   OR   WALL   STREET   MARKET.  247 

own  proper  cost  and  charge."  Six  years  after,  a  law  was  ordained, 
that  the  market-house  "  commonly  called  WaU  Street  Marhet-Hotise 
is  hereby  appointed  a  public  market-place  for  the  sale  of  all  sorts 
of  com,  grain,  and  meal ;  and  that  from  and  after  the  25th  day  of 
March  next,  (1726,)  no  corn,  grain,  or  meal  be  sold  in  publick  mar- 
ket within  this  city  at  any  other  place"  but  at  this  market,  under  a 
heavy  penalty. 

After  this  period,  it  became  usually  known  in  the  "  papers'  adver- 
tisements"  as  the  Meal  Market,  until  it  ceased  to  exist.  Lyne's 
Map,  1729,  marks  it  down.  No.  10,  Meat  Market;  which  no  doubt 
was  the  printer's  mistake,  as  no  cut  meat  was  allowed  to  be  sold  in 
it  until  about  1740,  when  an  ordinance  was  passed,  "allowing 
country  people  to  cut  meat  up,"  and  also  in  the  Broadway  Market; 
which  fact  is  more  particularly  referred  to  in  the  history  of  that 
market, 

Bradford's  Gazette,  1734,  says :  "  To  be  sold  by  John  Briggs,  at 
his  shop^  at  the  corner  of  the  Meal  Market,  all  sorts  of  Drugs  and 
Medicines  by  wholesale."  I  don't  suppose  there  is  at  present  a 
shop  in  that  neighborhood  that  sells  at  wholesale,  or  even  one  at  re- 
tail. The  "  Weekly  Post  Boy  "  of  1743  notices  their  "  new  printing- 
office  is  removed  from  Hanover  Square  to  Hunter's  Key,  (Quay J 
about  midway  between  the  Old  Slip  and  Meal  Market"  "The 
printer  hereof"  ("  Mercury,"  April  29,  1754,  says,)  "  is  now  moved 
next  door  to  Mr.  Robert  0.  Livingston,  in  Queen  (Pearl)  Street, 
between  the  Fly  and  Meal  Markets"  The  same  paper.  May  6, 
notices  "  European  and  India  Goods — to  be  sold  by  Richard  Van 
Dyck,  at  his  store  in  Hanover  Square,  near  the  Meal  Market" 
The  same  paper,  March  3,  1760,  has — "To  be  sold  at  public  ven- 
due, on  Wednesday,  the  12th  of  March  inst.,  a  large  and  convenient 
dwelling-house,  with  the  lot  of  ground  thereunto  belonging,  on  the 
corner  of  Wall  Street  and  Queen  Street,  opposite  to  the  Meal 
Market,  neare  the  Merchants'  Coffee-House,  now  in  the  occupation 
of  Mr.  Daniel  Bright." 

We  look  back  into  the  Records  in  the  year  1737,  when  we  find 
•*  William  Cornell "  had — "  Farmed  (or  leased)  the  ferry  between 
this  city  and  Island  of  Nassau,  (L.  LJ  and  petitioned  to  amend  and 
enlarge  the  market-hotise  at  Clark's  Slip,  (then  aJt  the  foot  of  WaU 
Street,)  as  it  is  mightily  out  of  repair,  and  sundry  conveniences 
wanting  for  the  better  landing  and  preserving  the  ferry-boats,  at 
their  own  cost  and  charges,  with  the  assistance  of  such  as  will  con- 
tribute to  the  same."    Which  privilege  was  granted. 

The  year  previous,  Joseph  Reade  had  repaired  this  market-house^ 
at  a  cost  of  £28,  lOs.,  lOd.,  upon  which  he  had  received  X25,  lOs., 


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248  MEAL  OB  WALL  STREET  MARKET. 

8d.,  "raised  by  subscription  and  money  receired;''  learing  a  bal- 
ance of  X3,  68.,  2d.,  which  the  Corporation  agrees  to  make  up. 

William  Cornell,  on  the  15th  of  May,  1739,  petitioned  for  abate- 
ment of  rent  for  the  ferry,  and  pleads,  "  That  he  has  sustained  very 
considerable  loss  by  the  spreading  of  the  ttmaUrpox,  which  deters 
both  strangers  and  travelers  from  comeing  to  town,  and  the  country 
people  from  coming  to  market  as  usual.  That  your  petitioner's 
family  was  very  soon  visited  with  the  said  distemper,  and  by  it  had 
the  misfortune  to  loose  tv)o  fine  negro  men^  for  which  he  g^ve  one 
hundred  and  ten  pounds^  besides  a  young  negro  woman,  born  in  his 
own  family,  of  great  value.  That  when  he  first  took  the  ferry,  he 
ofiered  sixty-five  pounds  per  annum  rent  more  than  the  former  ten- 
ant had  g^ven,  and  had  provided  himself  with  boats,  negroes,  and 
all  other  conveniences,  at  a  very  great  charge  and  expense,  in  order 
to  perform  his  duty  and  gain  a  comfortable  subsistence  for  himself 
and  family,  which  was  all  he  expected  thereby.  But  as  it  pleases 
Almighty  God  still  to  suffer  the  distemper  to  spread,  and  continue 
not  only  in  the  city,  but  also  in  many  parts  of  the  country,  your 
petitioner's  loss  does  daily  continue;  and  unless  he  be  relieved  by 
the  charity  of  this  Board,  in  an  abatement  of  the  great  rent  be  is 
to  pay,  he  knows  not  when  or  where  his  losses  will  end,"  Ac.  The 
Board,  "  upon  mature  consideration,  ordered  that  the  sum  of  sixty- 
five  pounds  be  abated  out  of  this  year's  rent." 

The  small-pox  was,  no  doubt,  brought  into  the  city  the  latter  part 
of  the  year  previous,  as  the  authorities  were,  in  the  month  of  June, 
adopting  such  sanitary  regulations  as  were  then  proposed,  in  conse- 
quence of  the  '*  fears  and  apprehensions  of  the  citizens  that  the 
small-pox  and  malignant  feavers  being  brought  into  the  city  from 
South  Carolina,  Barbadoes,  Antigua,  and  other  places  where  the 
same  diseases  of  late  have  been  attended  with  great  mortality." 
It  was  ulso  stated  at  a  meeting  of  the  Council  at  *'  Fort  George," 
27th  June,  "That  the  *  small-pox '  was  pretty  rief  at  South  Carolina, 
and  that  a  purpled  or  spotted  feaver  began  to  spread  there."  One 
of  the  pilots  for  this  port  was  ordered  "  to  be  constantly  in  waiting 
at  or  near  Sandy  Hook,  and  go  on  board  all  vessels  bound  hither, 
and  acquaint  all  masters  that  it  was  the  order  of  the  Board,  that 
before  they  come  within  this  harbour,  they  first  anchor  near  Bed- 
low's  Island,  to  be  examined  by  Doctor  Roelof  Eiersted,  who  was 
appointed  for  that  purpose." 

This  Doctor  Kiersted  was  a  descendant  of  Doctor  Hans  Kiersted,* 
who  emigrated  from  Holland  about  1636,  and  died  in  the  year  1666, 
leaving  several  descendants  who  have  followed  his  profession.  The 
•  See  "  Markei-Plaoe  »t  the  Stnod.'* 


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IfBAL  OB  WALL  8TRE6T  MARKET.  249 

well-known  and  highly-esteemed  citizen,  Qeneral  Henry  T.  Eiersted, 
is  also  one  of  the  descendants,  and  one  of  the  oldest  and  most  popn- 
lar  druggists  in  the  city.  For  forty  years  he  has  kept  an  excdlent 
store  on  the  comer  of  Broadway  and  Spring  Street,  from  whence  he 
lately  removed  to  the  corner  of  Broadway  and  Forty-sixth  Street, 
where  yet  he  prepares  a  valuable  ointment  from  a  recipe  leSt  by  his 
ancient  forefather,  Doctor  Hans  Kiersted. 

About  this  period  (1732)  the  established  ferry  rates  between  Long 
Island  and  New  York  were,  "  For  transporting  every  person,  two- 
pence in  bills  of  credit  current  in  this  colony;  and  if  after  sunset, 
douUe  that  rate.  For  every  horse  or  beast,  one  shilling;  calf  or 
hogj/ow-penoe;  sheep  or  lamb,  threepcMie;  dead  hog,  threepence; 
dead  sheep,  lamb,  or  calf,  twopence;  bushel  of  grain,  one  penny.  For 
every  waggon,/i;e  ahiUings;  for  every  gammon  of  bacon,  turkey,  or 
goose,  one  halfpenny ;  and  for  every  hundred  of  eggs,  three  egge,^*  &c. 

interesting  scenes  are  said  to  have  been  sometimes  enacted  at  the 
ferry;  often  in  the  payment  of  the  ferriage.  *' Among  the  rates 
fixed  was  one  giving  to  the  ferryman  three  eggs  for  every  hundred 
carried  to  market,  which  put  the  women  and  girls  to  no  small  in- 
convenience, in  stopping,  when  on  their  way  to  market,  to  have  their 
^gs  counted ;  besides,  it  must  have  occasioned  no  trifling  merriment 
to  travelers,  to  see  the  ferryman  overhauling  the  eggs,  and  arranging 
them  in  rows  on  the  sand,  where  he  and  the  females  occasionally 
disputed  about  the  numbers  and  the  amount  of  duty,  which  often  led 
to  a  second  or  third  counting  before  the  contested  point  could  be 
settled.'' 

The  accounts  given  of  the  winter  of  1739  and  '40  describe  it  as  a 
severe  one,  when  the  farmers  on  Long  Island  were  ''in  so  great 
want  of  fodder  for  their  cattle  in  several  places,  that  4  cows  are 
given  to  have  one  returned  in  May ;  and  that  the  cold  has  been  f» 
severe  that  even  deer,  squirrels,  and  birds  have  been  found  froeen 
to  death.  Great  quantities  of  sheep  have  perished.  Wood  sold  this 
day  for  40  shillings  per  cord." 

The  first  regular  butcher  stands  in  this  market  were  introduced 
in  the  month  of  May,  1740,  wh«i  Oharles  Dawson  and  Isaac  Yarian 
leased  two  of  them.  The  principal  business  done  here,  however, 
was  by  the  country  people  with  their  surplus  grain,  flour,  and  meal, 
which  they  brought  altogether  in  bags,  when,  if  noiscrid  on  the  flrst 
day,  the  arrangements  were  so  unsatiBliBetory,  they  were  obliged 
to  store  it  in  the  neighboring  shops  until  the  next  market-day ;  and 
then,  when  sold,  if  the  purchasers  were  not  satisfied  with  the  weight, 
it  must  again  be  carried  to  these  shops  and  reweighed  at  an  addir 
tional  cost.    This,  however,  was  remedied  in  the  month  of  Septent- 


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250  VEAL  OR  WALL  STREET  MARKET. 

ber,  1740,  by  the  Council,  who  "Ordered  that  Mr.  John  Marschalk 
have  liberty  at  his  own  expense  to  make  such  conveniences  as  he 
shall  think  proper  in  the  meed  market^  for  storing  meal  brought  to 
market  there,  and  providing  scales  and  weights  for  weighing  the 
same,  and  to  receive  a  reasonable  reward  for  storing  and  weighing 
the  same." 

Another  affliction  visited  the  city,  both  in  the  summers  of  1742 
and  '43,  which  was  then  known  as  an  epidemical  distemper  or  pUzgue^ 
no  doubt  the  yellow  fever.  The  population  of  the  city  was  then 
about  10,000  inhabitants,  and  so  fatal  was  it  in  1743  that  an  average 
number  of  deaths,  for  three  months,  was  17  weekly,  with  large  num* 
bers  out  of  the  city.  "An  account  of  persons  in  the  City  of  New 
York,  from  the  25th  of  July  to  the  2Sth  of  September,  1743,''  is 
given  by  the  Mayor,  John  Cruger:  "  Children  51,  grown  persons 
114,  in  all  165.  From  the  26th  of  September  to  the  22d  of  October, 
children  16,  grown  persons  86,  in  all  52.  And  do  find  by  the  b^st 
information  I  have  of  the  doctors,  &c.,  of  this  city,  that  the  late  dia^ 
temper  is  now  over."* 

The  fatality  of  the  "  Small-Pox,"  through  the  winter  of  1742-3, 
kept  the  usual  supplies  from  the  city,  together  with  the  necessary 
wants  of  the  increased  number  of  shipping  which  visited  New  York, 
caused  provisions  to  advance  very  much  in  price.  In  the  month  of 
February,  1743,  a  committee  was  appointed  ''  to  meet  such  of  the 
practitioners  of  the  law  as  they  think  convenient  to  desire  their 
opinion,  whether  this  Corporation  can  by  any  law,  and  in  what 
manner,  prevent  persons  buying  quarters  of  beef  in  the  markets  an^ 
dapping  of  the  same,  which  has  greatly  raised  the  price  of  beef  to 
the  inhabitants."  A  continuation  of  high  prices  appears  to  have 
ruled  for  several  years.  In  fact,  when  prices  are  raised  from 
scarcity,  a  mere  supply  will  not  reduce  them ;  but  it  demands  a  con* 
tinuous  surplus  or  glut  to  bring  them  down  again. 

These  high  prices  were  again  greatly  assisted  from  the  long  cold 
winter  of  1746-7,  which  caused  a  great  scarcity  of  fuel  as  well  as 
provisions.  This  fact  is  particularly  noticed  in  the  "  Press,"  Feb- 
ruary 9th,  1747 :  "  The  deplorable  circumstances  this  city  is  under 
from  a  long  series  of  cold  and  freezing  weather  is  matter  of  conoem 
to  all ;  this  now  not  only  hinders  our  foreign  navigation,  but  occa- 
sions our  fire-wood  to  be  so  scarce  and  dear  as  was  never  equaled 
here  before;  the  price  being  from  40s.  to  58s.  a  cord,  and  almost 
half  of  the  inhabitants  in  want.  Provisions  also  are  excessive  dear. 
A  good  turkey,  which  scarcely  ever  before  exceeded  3s.  6d.,  has 
lately  been  sold  for  5s. ;  a  fat  fowl  for  15d. ;  a  pound  of  butter  for 
14d.|  and  many  things  proportionable." 

*  American  Magazine,  October  24, 1743. 


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MEAL   OR    WALL   STREET   MARKET.  251 

For  several  seasons  high  prices  continued,  and  this  (with  the  nni- 
versal  practice,  as  it  is  at  the  present  day,  of  selling  ''  small  meats" 
by  the  quarter,  and  especially  when  the  quarters  are  very  small  and 
light ;  and  also  the  meat  from  the  large  animals  by  the  piece,  when 
a  much  smaller-sized  piece  was  given  for  a  sixpence,  or  a  shilling, 
than  was  formerly  given,)  gave  considerable  dissatisfaction,  and  no 
doubt  caused  an  addition  to  the  market  laws  in  the  month  of  May, 
1749:  ''That  from  and  after  the  first  day  of  April  next,  no  beef, 
pork,  veal,  mutton,  and  lamb,  shall  be  sold  in  any  of  the  public  mar- 
kets of  this  city  by  any  butcher,  country  people,  or  others,  in  any 
other  manner  than  by  the  pound,  under  the  penalty  of  ten  shilling^ 
for  every  offence."  The  enactment  of  this  law  was  thought  expe- 
dient and  necessary,  in  order  that  the  butchers  and  others  might  not 
plead  ignorance  for  want  of  information. 

But  a  few  months  after  this  law  was  passed,  when  the  following 
was  announced  through  the  press:  "  It  must  at  last  give  some  ideas 
of  comfort  to  the  poor  people  of  this  city,  as  well  as  to  the  honest 
trading  part,  that  provisions  must  soon  fall  from  the  exorbitant 
price  which  they  have  been  held  at  here  for  upwards  of  twelve 
months  past." 

The  legitimate  business  of  this  market-place  after  1750  began  to 
fail,  while  another  had  arisen.  Mercantile  trading,  with  sales  at 
vendue  almost  daily,  had  begun  to  encompass  it.  The  *'  fast"  mer- 
chants of  that  day  were  springing  up,  with  little  or  no  veneration 
for  antiquity  in  any  form,  (except  the  almighty  dollar  with  very 
plain  pillars,)  and  more  especially  for  this  then  old  market-house, 
which  stood  upon  the  grounds  of  their  future  wealth  and  prosperity. 
Their  peculiar  looks  when  the  old  market-house  crossed  tiieir  obs^ 
vation,  if  interpreted  into  speech,  would  have  been,  that  its  absence 
would  be  more  agreeable  than  its  presence.  However,  it  stood 
until  1760,  when  we  find  Gilbert  Outen  Bogert  and  Robert  Grobum 
were  ordered  to  be  paid  "forty-three  pounds  and  five-pence  in  full 
for  work  done  and  materials  found  and  provided  to  repair  the  Meed 
Market  and  the  dock  and  drain." 

This  repairing,  however,  did  not  save  it,  as  a  strong  petition  was 
before  the  Board,  February  23, 1762,  "  from  several  persons  living 
near  the  Meal  Market  ask  for  its  removal."  They  state, ''  that  they 
conceive  the  building  called  the  Meai  Market,  in  the  East  Ward 
of  this  city,  is  of  no  real  use  or  advantage,  either  to  the  community 
in  general,  or  with  the  inhabitants  living  near  thereto ;  that  poultry 
and  other  country  produce  being  generally  carried  to  other  markets, 
and  no  provisions  are  sold  in  the  Meal  Market,  except  by  a  few 
butchers,  who  might  be  as  well  accommodated  with  standings  in 


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252      FLATTEK  BARRACK  M ARKET-PLAOE. 

other  markets  in  this  city.  That  the  said  building  greatly  obstmcts 
the  agreeable  prospect  of  the  East  River,  which  those  that  live  in  Wall 
Street  would  otherwise  eiyoy — occasions  a  dirty  street,  offensive  to 
the  inhabitants  on  each  side,  and  disagreeable  to  those  who  pass  and 
repass  to  and  from  the  Goffee-Honse,  a  place  of  great  resort,"  Ac. 
The  Board  ordered  it  to  be  removed  and  aflSxed  to  the  "  Broadway 
Mai-ket,"  which  at  this  period  was  generally  known  as  Oswego  Mar* 
kef;  '^and  to  remove  so  much  of  the  materials  of  said  market  as 
will  suflSce  to  make  a  platform  over  the  common  sewer,  which  would 
be  uncovered  by  the  removal"  of  the  old  building. 


FLATTEN  BARRACK  MARKET-PLACE. 

1711.  The  establishment  of  this  market-place  was  caused  by  the 
seizure  of  all  the  market-houses  in  the  city,  except  one,  {Old  Slip,) 
to  build  battoes  in,  by  the  order  of  Governor  Hunter,  in  1711,  when 
the  English,  being  then  at  war  with  the  French,  were  secretly  or* 
ganizing  an  expedition  to  surprise  the  French  in  Canada. 

This  order  was  placed  before  the  Board  on  the  28th  of  June  of 
that  year ;  when  they  ordered,  **  That  all  the  market-houses  of  this 
city  (except  that  at  Burger's  Path)  be  set  apart  for  the  conveniency 
of  building  the  said  battoes,  and  for  no  other  use  or  service  whatso- 
ever, until  the  same  be  compleat  and  finished ;  any  former  law,  order 
or  ordinance  of  this  Corporation  to  the  contrary  hereof  in  any  wise 
notwithstanding." 

This  deprived  the  butchers,  country  people,  and  the  inhabitants 
of  their  usual  accommodations  for  a  period ;  but  their  wants  were 
soon  after  supplied  by  the  establishment  of  this  then  intended  tem- 
porary market-place,  on  the  following  7th  of  September,  when  it 
was  ''Ordained,  that  the  north  end  of  Broad  Street,  between  the 
City  Hall  of  this  city  and  the  cross  street  which  goes  from  the 
Broadway  to  the  Dutch  Church,  be  and  is  hereby  appointed,  order- 
ed, and  established  a  public  market-place  of  this  ci^,  in  as  full  and 
ample  manner  as  other  public  marke^places  of  this  city,"  and  "  the 
inhabitants  in  and  about  the  Broad  Street  have  liberty  to  erect  and 
build  such  stalls  and  sheds  and  other  convenyences  as  shall  be  direct- 
ed by  the  Clerk." 

These  battoes  were  flalrbottomed  row-boats,  and  sharp  at  both 
ends.  Kalm  says,  fliey  were  "made  of  boards  of  white  pine;  the 
bottom  flat,  that  they  may  row  the  better  in  shallow  water;  they 


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FLATTEN  BARRACK  MARKET-PLACE.      2Bi 

are  sharp  at  both  ends,  and  somewhat  higher  towards  the  end  than 
the  middle.  They  are  long,  yet  not  all  alike,  commonly  three  and 
sometimes  fonr  fathoms  long.  The  height  from  Hie  bottom  to  the 
top  of  the  board  (for  the  sides  stand  almost  perpendicular)  is  from 
twenty  inches  to  two  feet,  and  the  breadth  in  the  middle  abont  a 
yard  and  six  inches." 

B^^nlar  companies  of  men  were  organised  to  take  charge  of  them, 
and  for  a  particular  description  of  the  organization  of  these  com* 
panics  reference  may  be  made  to  an  order  from  William  Shirley, 
Esq.,  General  and  Commander^in-Ohief  of  His  Majesty's  forces,  in 
the  year  1756,  which  says:  ''That  the  battoemen  be  formed  into 
companies  of  fifty  men  each,  a  captain  and  an  assistant ;  each  com- 
pany to  take  charge  and  navigate  25  battoes,  in  the  most  expedi* 
tions  and  careinl  manner  they  can,  in  the  stations  they  shall  be 
placed.  Each  man  to  fnmish  himself  with  a  good  fusee  or  mnsket, 
and  three  ponnds  of  snitable  baUa.  Each  captdn  to  be  allowed  eight 
AiXLinga  New  Tori  currency  per  day ;  each  assistant,  eix  ehUUng$; 
and  each  battoeman^  four  shtUinga  per  day,  and  to  be  found  in  the 
provisions  according  to  the  allowance  of  the  army,  and  to  be  frr* 
nished  with  powder  at  the  expense  of  the  crown.''  They  '*  are  de* 
sired  to  send  in  their  names  to  Sur  John  Sinclair,  Deputy  Quarter- 
master^General  in  New  York."* 

This  market-place  appeared  to  ei\joy  no  particular  name,  either 
in  the  laws,  records,  or  "old  papers,"  and  its  location  being  in  Broad 
Street,  at  tiie  head  of  the  Canal,  near  the  foot  of  ''Yerlettenburgh 
Hill,"  afterwards  more  generally  known  as  *'  Flatten  Barrack  Hill," 
or  Street,  I  thought  it  not  improper  to  designate  it  as  the  "  Flatten 
Barrack  Market-PlaoeJ^ 

The  Laws  of  1720,  in  noticing  all  the  market-places,  say  of  this: 
"At  the  north  end  of  Broad  Street,  between  the  City  Hall  of  this 
city  and  the  cross  street  which  leads  from  the  Broadway  to  the 
Dutch  Church,  be  and  are  hereby  appointed  one  of  the  publick  ma]> 
ket-places  of  this  city." 

This  hill  or  street  is  marked  on  Lyne's  Map,  1729,  as  **  Flatten 
Barrack,"  and  at  various  periods  afterwards,  with  both  Verletien- 
burgh  and  Flatten  Barrack^  as  the  two  following  notices  will  show. 
In  an  advertisement  (N.  T.  Journal)  of  a  house  for  sale,  in  the  month 
of  Marchf  1772:  "The  neat  convenient  house  and  lot  of  ground  at 
the  comer  of  Flattenbarrack  HiU,  near  the  old  City  Hall  in  Broad 
Street,  occupied  by  Mr.  John  Coghill  Enapp,  (Attorney  at  Law,) 
and  subject  to  the  remainder  of  his  lease,  three  years  to  come  at 
May-day  next.  The  rent  twenty-nine  pounds  per  year,  and  the 
taxes.    A  good  title  will  be  given  by  the  executors  to  the  estate  of 

•  N.  Y.  Mmary,  Jaonwy  16, 1766. 


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254      FLATTEN  BARRAOR  MARKET-PLAGE. 

Mary  Lashby,  deceased.'^  John  Jay,  on  the  3d  of  January,  1785, 
writes  to  Mayor  Duane,  and  says:  "Ab  I  intend  in  the  spring  to 
build  on  the  east  side  of  the  Broadway,  near  Verleitenburgh,  it  is 
important  for  me  to  know  whether  the  Corporation  propose  to  leave 
that  street  in  its  present  state,  or  by  lowering  it,  render  the  streets 
leading  from  it  to  the  river  practicable  for  carriages.  The  present 
condition  of  the  Broadway  affords  an  opportunity  for  such  a  regula- 
tion which  may  never  offer  again,  and  the  proprietors  of  the  lotts  in 
it,  from  near  the  Church  (Trinity)  to  the  Bowling  Green,  are  ex- 
ceedingly interested  in  knowing  what  to  expect  on  that  subject,  be- 
cause their  houses  ought  to  be  accommodated  to  whatever  plan  may 
be  adopted  respecting  the  street.  For  my  part,  I  am  so  fully  con- 
vinced of  the  utility  of  such  a  regulation,  that  although  my  lott  lies 
on  the  east  side  of  the  street,  and  I  have  no  water-lotts  to  be  filled 
up  or  benefitted  by  it,  yet  I  would  cheerfully  contribute  towards  de- 
fraying any  expense  that  might  be  occasioned  by  it.    Yours,  Ac." 

I  am  told  that  the  name  of  Flattenbarrack  HiU  continued  until 
within  the  last  fifty  years;  and  the  Old  Boys  of  New  York,  when 
they  happen  to  meet  together  in  conversation  of  their  youthful  pas- 
times, will  eulogize  the  glorious  sled-rides  they  ofttimes  had  down 
this  once  famous  hill. 

The  part  of  this  street  running  from  Broad  Street  easterly  was,  at 
an  early  period,  known  as  Garden  Alley,  Garden  Lane,  Church 
Street,  and  Garden  Street,  which  at  an  early  period  led  to  Mod- 
tayne^s  Garden.  In  1794  the  whole  street  through,  from  Broadway 
past  the  Dutch  Church,  was  called  Garden  Street ;  and  since  the 
great  fire  of  1835,  and  the  erection  of  the  Exchange,  it  is  known  as 
Exchange  Place. 

'*The  canal  in  Broad  Street  went  up  originally  to  the  hill  called 
Verlettenburgh,  since  corrupted  to  Flattenbarrack  HiU;  the  word 
bergh  implied  a  hiU,  and  verletten  meant  to  stop.  The  ferry  once 
there,  at  the  head  or  stop  of  tide-water,  furnished  a  means  to  bring 
country  folks  and  marketing  from  Brooklyn  and  Gowanus,  &o.j  up 
to  the  heart  of  the  city,"*  or  rather  to  this  market-place. 

"This  ferry-house,"  says  Mr.  Rammey,  "was  on  the  corner  of 
Broad  Street,  at  the  northeast  comer  of  Garden  Street,  where  flat- 
bottomed  boats  used  to  come  up  to  from  Jersey."  "  To  me,"  Wat- 
son says,  "  I  confess,  it  seems  to  have  been  a  singular  place  for  a 
ferry ;  but  as  tradition  is  so  general  and  concurrent,  I  incline  to 
think  it  was  so  called  from  its  being  a  resort  of  country  boats  com- 
ing there  to  find  a  central  place  for  their  sales.  I  have  heard  the 
names  of  certain  present  rich  families  whose  ancestors  were  said  to 
come  there  with  oysters."t 

•  WatooD,  Annals  N.  Y.,  p.  ISa  f  Ibid.,  p.  182. 


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FLATTEN  BARRACK   MARKET-PLAGE.  255 

^tir.  David  Grim  told  his  daughter  of  there  having  been  a  market 
onoe  held  at  the  head  of  Broad  Street.  This  agrees  with  what  O. 
N.  Bleecker,  Esq.,  told  me,  (Watson,)  as  from  his  grandmother,  who 
apoke  of  a  market  at  Garden  Street,  which  was  in  effect  the  same 
place/'*  No  doubt  this  market-place  was  pretty  well  attended  with 
market  (ox)  carta,  country  wagons,  Ac. ;  and  near  bj,  at  the  head  of 
Broad  Street,  in  front  of  the  City  Hall,  were  placed  the  imple- 
ments of  corporeal  punishment — iiie  Whipping-Post^  Pillory ^  and 
Stocks — ^where  occasionally  the  citizens  assembled  to  witness  the 
various  punishments  on  certain  individuals.  Mr.  Ebbets  says: 
*'  He  has  seen  them  lead  the  culprits  round  the  town,  whipping 
them  at  the  cart-tail."t  "  They  also  introduced  the  wooden  horse 
as  a  punishment.  The  horse  was  put  into  the  cart-body,  and  the 
criminal  set  thereon.  Mary  Price  having  been  the  first  who  had 
the  infamous  distinction,  caused  the  horse  ever  after  to  be  called 
*  the  horse  of  Mary  Price.'  "t  Many  faahicmcMe  ladies  of  ques- 
tionable character  at  that  period  gave  tiie  Public  Whipper  at  times 
some  delicate  trouble,  as  they  then  wore  unusually  large  hoops;  and 
they  were  also  worn  by  the  negro  slaves,  and  many  other  '*  slaves 
to  &8hion"  at  various  periods,  of  which  the  following  are  instances: 
The  first  symptoms  of  the  "hoop  fever"  appear  to  have  broken  out 
in  London  in  the  year  1711,  when  we  find  the  "  Spectator/'  July 
26,  uses  language  quite  as  broad  as  the  bottoms  of  the  ladies' 
dresses,  and  says:  " The  fair  sex  are  run  into  great  extravagances. 
Their  petticoats  are  blown  up  into  a  most  enormous  concave.  The 
women  give  out,  in  defence  of  these  wide  bottoms,  that  they  are 
airy,  and  very  proper  for  the  season.  Several  speculative  persons 
are  of  opinion  that  our  sex  has  of  late  years  been  very  saucy,  and 
that  the  hoop  petticoat  is  made  use  of  to  keep  us  at  a  distance.  A 
female  who  is  thus  invested  in  whalebone  is  sufSciently  secured 
against  the  approaches  of  an  ill-bred  fellow,  and  might  as  well 
think  of  Sir  George  Etherige's  way  of  making  love  in  a  tub,  as  in 
the  midst  of  so  many  hoops.  The  first  time  I  saw  a  lady  dressed 
in  one  of  these  petticoats,  I  could  not  forbear  blaming  her  in  my  own 
thoughts  for  walking  abroad  when  she  was  so  near  her  time;  but 
soon  recovered  myself  out  of  my  errour,  when  I  found  all  the  modish 
part  of  the  sex  as  far  gone  as  herself.  Should  this  fashion  get 
among  the  ordinary  people,  our  publick  ways  would  be  so  crowded 
that  we  should  want  street-room."  The  "  Boston  Gazette,"  in  no- 
ticing the  London  news,  June  17, 1724,  says:  "We  hear  that  a 
young  lady  at  Guilford,  upon  some  discontent,  took  a  lover's  leap 
into  the  river,  (Wey,)  with  a  design  to  cure  or  drown  herself;  but 
•Wat80D,AiiiMUN.T.,p.  185.  \VM.  |  See  Old  8Up  Markst 


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256      FLATTEN  BARBACK  MARKET-PL  AGE. 

her  large  hoop  keeping  her  above  water,  and  she  finding  that  ele- 
ment too  cooling  and  uncourtly,  acreao^  out  for  help,  whidi  was 
presently  given  her,  and  she  was  taken  oat  alive."*  Then  the  news 
from  Boston,  November  18, 1727,  says:  ''The  late  dreadful  earth- 
quake was  felt  at  Guilford^  in  Connecticut  Oolony,  160  miles  from 
this  place,  where  it  was  so  violent  that  it  shook  down  a  chimney, 
threw  open  the  door  of  the  minister's  house,  tolled  a  bell,  removed 
blocks  in  the  chimney-comer  and  a  chest  about  the  floor,  and  shook 
the  houses  to  a  great  degree.  The  shock  lasted  about  a  minute. 
A  considerable  town  in  this  province  has  been  so  awakened  by  this 
awful  providence^  that  the  women  have  generally  laid  by  their  hoop 
petticoats." t  "This  great  earthquake  happened  on  the  29th  of 
October,  about  twenty  minutes  before  eleven  in  the  evening.  The 
noise  was  like  the  roaring  of  a  chimney  on  fire ;  the  sea  was  vio- 
lently agitated,  and  the  stone  walls  and  chimneys  were  thrown 
down."  "Another  great  earthquake  took  place  on  the  18th  of  No- 
vember, 1755,  at  fifteen  minutes  after  four  in  the  morning,  and  con- 
tinued about  four  minutes:  walls  and  chimneys  were  thrown  down, 
and  clocks  stopped."  ''On  the  same  day  Lisbon  was  destroyed." t 
This  earthquake  of  1727,  although  sensibly  felt  in  New  York  and 
other  States,  did  not  discourage  the  continuation  of  wearing  hoops, 
and  more  especially  by  some  of  the  negro  slaves.  As  late  as  1732, 
I  find  one  "  Martin  Jervis  advertises  his  negro  woman  'Jenny'  as  hav- 
ing ran  away ."§  "  She  had  on  when  she  went  away  a  purpled-colored 
peticoat  and  a  drab-colored  waistcoat,  a  blue-and-white  striped  cot- 
ton and  linen  peticoat,  and  a  yellowish  dest^own,  roobed  with  red, 
a  hooped  peUcocUj  Ac,  and  a  bag  of  sundry  linen."  Some  fifty  years 
after,  we  fiind  the  remarks  of  a  dissatisfied  individual  noticed  in  the 
Gazetteer,  (January  4, 1785,)  who  says:  "The  article  I  mean  to 
take  notice  of  is  the  hoop,  which  is  so  universally  worn,  that  it  is 
impossible  for  a  person  to  walk  the  streets  without  being  frequently 
turned  out  of  the  way,  and  exposed  to  the  annoyance  of  carts, 
coaches,  Ac.  I  think  some  method  ought  to  be  taken  to  check  such 
an  epidemic  inconvenience,  or  to  turn  it  to  the  public  advantage. 
With  this  view,  I  would  advise  the  Legislature  to  impose  a  tax 
on  all  hoop$,  which  would  add  to  the  revenue  of  the  State,  and 
prevent  the  lower  class  from  parading  the  streets  enveloped 
with  a  hoop  wide  enough  for  a  princess." 

About  the  year  1855,  in  a  very  fashionable  city  of  Europe,  a  very 
prominent  individual  again  introduced  the  wearing  of  %o<^,  and  it 
was  strongly  hinted  that  she  wore  them  to  cover  her  figure;  but 

*  August  28, 1724  t  Upcott's  Golleetioiu. 

t  History  of  Lyuk  §  Weekly  Mercury,  Phlla.,  June  11, 1782. 


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FLATTEN  BARRACK  MARKET-PLACE.      257 

▼hether  bo  or  not,  she  wore  them,  and  that  was  enough  to  set  all 
the  ladies,  or  rather  females,  of  every  description  in  every  civilized 
coantry  in  the  universe  to  wear  them.  If  this  be  so,  it  will  be  with 
her  pleasure  when  hoops  shall  be  out  of  fashion. 

Reverting  again  to  this  market-place,  we  find,  in  the  summer  and 
fall  of  1731,  the  markets  were  poorly  supplied  with  provisions,  in 
consequence  of  the  great  mortality  of  the  amall-pox.  A  September 
number  of  the  "  Boston  News  Letter"  of  that  year  shows  this  fact, 
from  a  letter  written  in  New  York,  of  which  the  following  is  an  ex- 
tract:  '*  Here  is  little  or  no  news  in  the  place ;  nothing  but  the  mel- 
ancholy scenes  of  little  business,  and  less  money ;  the  markets  begin 
to  grow  very  thin ;  the  small-pox  raging  violently  in  town,  which, 
in  a  great  measure,  hinders  the  country  people  from  supplying  this 
place  with  provisions."  In  the  month  of  September,  "  41  out  of  69 
persons  died  of  the  small-pox ;  and  in  the  first  week  of  October,  61 
died  out  of  70." 

In  the  "  Upcott  Collection"  of  clippings,  in  the  Library  of  the 
New  York  Historical  Society,  under  date  of  September  27,  1781, 
the  following  appears :  "  The  small-pox,  fever,  and  flux  prevail  very 
much  in  this  city,  and  many  children  die  of  the  said  distempers,  as 
well  as  grown  persons;  and  the  country  people  are  afraid  to  come 
to  town,  which  makes  the  markets  thin,  provisions  dear,  and  deadens 
all  trade;  and  it  goes  very  hard  with  the  poor,  insomuch  that  a 
charitable  contribution  for  them  is  promoted,  and  one  gentleman  has 
given  20  pistoles,  another  £20  towards  their  relief,  and  other  chari- 
ties are  thrown  in,  according  to  the  circumstances  of  the  benefactors." 
'*  The  following  is  an  exact  account  of  the  burials  in  New  York 
for  three  weeks,  viz.,  from  September  20  to  October  11 : 
Of  the  Church  of  England,  108    Of  Presbyterians,    -    -        5 
Of  the  Dutch  Church,     -      99    Of  Negroes,-       -       -      80 

Of  the  French  Church,    - 6  (TotdtJ        248 

Of  those  died  of  the  small-pox, 185 

Of  all  (other)  distempers,  only     ....  68 

And  for  the  succeeding  fortnight,  viz.,  from  October  11  to  Octo- 
ber 25, 1731,  exclusive  of  negroes: 

Of  the  Church  of  England,    58    Of  Lutherans,        -        -      2 
Of  the  Dutch  Church,  -    •    66    Of  Quakers,       •        -  1 

Of  the  French  Church,      -      2    Of  Jews,        -        -        - 1 

Of  Presbyterians,     -    -    -      5  125 

"  They  write  that  most  of  these,  and  of  the  negroes,  who  were 
bury'd  in  this  fortnight,  died  likewise  of  the  small-pox.    As  this  dis- 
temper, therefore,  is  so  very  fatal  in  most  of  our  colonies  on  the 
continent,  where  an  increase  of  inhabitants  is  so  very  necessary. 
Vol.  L— 17 


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258      FLATTEN  BARRACK  MARKET-PL AOB. 

we  can't  but  conceive,  notwithstanding  the  casnistry  of  some,  and 
the  prejadioes  of  others,  that  the  practice  of  innoculation,  Bkilfolly 
introduced  there,  woxdd  be  of  uo  small  benefit  to  prevent  the  ravages 
made  by  it,  which  sometimes  depopnlates  whole  provinces  there,  and 
frequently  puts  a  stop  to  all. manner  of  business,  both  public  and 
private." 

The  ''Gmeral  Assembly  "  had  previously  been  driven  from  their 
usual  place  of  meeting,  as  appears  from  their  proceedings  on  the  Slst 
of  August,  the  same  year,  in  consequence  of  the  prevalency  of  the 
small-pox.  Their  records  say:  "Upon  information  giv^  to  this 
house  by  some  of  the  members^  rumor  were  spread  that  a  person  is 
seized  of  the  small-pox  in  the  very  house  they  now  sit;  ike  mem- 
bers who  have  not  had  the  distemper  (being  about  one-third  of  the 
whole  number)  are  determined  not  to  appear  any  more  in  the  house 
during  this  session."  They  ''  Resolved,  That  the  house  be  adjourn- 
ed to  the  said  City  Hall  accordingly." 

Near  this  *'  market-place  "  was  built  the  first  engine-house  to  con- 
tain the  first  two  engines  used  in  this  dty,  which  were  ordered  in 
the  month  of  May,  1731,  through  a  committee,  "  to  agree  with  some 
merchant  or  merchants  to  send  to  London  for  two  compleat  fire- 
engines  with  suction,  and  materials  thereunto;  that  the  eizes  thereof 
be  of  the  fourth  and  sixth  sizes  of  Mr.  Newsham's  fire^ngines."  The 
Committee  reported  in  the  following  month,  that  they  had  agreed 
with  Mr.  Stephen  De  Lancey  and  John  Moore,  merchants,  at  the  rate 
of  one  hundred  and  twenty  per  cent,  on  the  foot  of  the  invoice,  ex- 
clusive of  commissions  and  insurance,  and  that  the  money  be  paid 
within  nine  months  after  the  delivery  thereof." 

After  their  arrival,  a  room  in  the  City  Hall  was  temporarily  fitted 
up  to  secure  them ;  and  no  doubt  they  were  first  used  at  a  fire  no- 
ticed in  the  "  Boston  Weekly  News,"  December  7, 1782,  from  the 
news  from  New  York,  which  states :  "  Last  night,  about  12  o'clock, 
a  fire  broke  out  in.  a  joyner's  house  in  this  city ;  it  began  in  the  gar* 
ret  where  the  people  were  all  asleep,  and  burnt  violently ;  but  by  the 
help  of  the  two  fire^ngines,  which  came  from  London  in  the  ship 
Beaver,  the  fire  was  extinguished,  after  having  burnt  down  that 
house  and  damaged  the  next." 

On  the  2d  of  January,  1788,  a  Committee  was'  empowered  ^  to 
employ  a  person  or  persons  forthwith  to  put  the  fire-engines  in  good 
order,  and  also  to  agree  with  proper  persons  to  look  after  and  take 
care  of  the  same,  that  they  may  be  always  in  good  plight  and  condi- 
tion, fitt  for  present  use;"  and  in  the  month  of  April,  1786,  instruo^ 
tions  were  given  to  a  Committee  to  ^'  cause  a  convenient  house  to 
be  made  contiguous  to  the  watch-house  in  the  Broad  Street,  {which 


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FLATTEN  BA&RACK  MARKET-PLAOE.      259 

location  toaa  near  this-  market-place,)  for  seeming  and  well-keeping 
the  fire-engines  of  this  city  f  and  it  was  also  *'  ordered  to  pay  to 
Mr.  Anthony  Lamb  or  order,  the  sum  of  three  pounds  three  shillings 
and  Mree-pence  in  full  of  a  quarter  of  a  year's  sallary,  as  overseer 
of  the  fire^ngines,  for  oil,  tallow,  and  mending  an  iron  hinge  for  the 
use  of  the  said  engines,  as  appears  by  his  account." 

After  this  period  fire«ngines  were  built  and  on  sale  here,  as  we 
find:  ''A  fire-engine  that  will  deliver  two  hogsheads  of  water  in  a 
minute,  in  a  continued  stream,  is  to  be  sold  by  William  Lindsay,  the 
maker  thereof.  Enquire  at  the  Fighting  Cocks,  next  door  to  the 
Exchange  Goffee-House,  New  York.''* 

The  appoinment  of  members,  as  well  as  the  curious  laws  binding 
them,  soon  after  took  place;  but  the  inefficiency  of  the  power  of 
these  engines  is  shown  when  the  Trinity  Church  was  on  fire  in  1753, 
from  a  commwnication  in  the  month  of  January,  which  says:  ''It 
hath  more  than  once  been  observed  that  our  engines  are  incapable 
of  throwing  water  to  such  a  height  as  is  sometimes  necessary.  Of 
this  we  had  a  dreadful  instance  when  the  steeple  of  Trinity  Church 
took  fire.  On  that  occasion,  we  observed,  with  universal  terror, 
that  the  Engines  would  scarce  deliver  the  water  to  the  top  of  the 
roof.  The  spire,  however,  was  far  beyond  its  reach ;  and  had  not 
Providence  smiled  upon  the  astonishing  dexterity  and  resolution  of 
a  few  men,  who  ascended  the  steeple  within,  that  splendid  and  su- 
perb edifice  had  in  all  probability  been  reduced  to  ashes.  We  are 
therefore  in  want  of  at  least  one  engine  of  the  largest  size,  which 
throws  water  about  one  hundred  and  seventy  feet  high. 

''Another  thing  in  which  our  present  method  of  extinguishing 
fires  is  capable  of  further  improvement  is  this:  It  is  usual  for  peo- 
ple, in  case  of  fire,  to  form  themselves  into  two  lines,  the  one  to  con- 
vey the  full  buckets  to  the  engine,  and  the  other  to  return  the  empty 
ones.  Now  it  frequently  happens  that  when  the  engine  is  full,  word 
is  given  to  ^stop  water. ^  This  occasions  a  total  cessation  in  the  con- 
veyance of  more  water  to  the  engine,  as  well  as  the  greatest  con- 
fusion in  the  ranks;  the  consequence  of  which  is,  that  the  engine  is 
empty  before  the  ranks  regain  their  former  regularity,  which  creates 
a  considerable  intermission  in  its  playing,  and  gives  tiie  fire  time  to 
resume  its  fury,  and  which,  if  often  repeated,  requires  a  much  greater 
quantity  of  water  for  its  total  suppression.  This  inconvenience 
might  be  easily  removed  by  supplying  each  engine  with  a  large  tvh, 
of  at  least  the  size  of  an  hogshead ;  which,  being  made  of  cedar, 
might  be  sufficiently  strong,  and  at  the  same  time  light  enough  to  be 
portable  by  two  men.    This  vessel  ought  to  be  placed  near  the  en- 

*  N.  Y.  Gasette,  Umj  9, 17S7 


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260  THURMAN'S   SLIP   MARKET-PLACE. 

gine,  and  all  tluB  full  buckets  to  be  emptied  into  it.  From  this  ca^ 
paciouB  tub  three  or  four  men  might  constantly  and  equally  keep 
the  engine  replenished,  which  would  enable  it  to  play  an  equable 
and  uniform  stream.''* 

The  success  no  doubt  continued  in  this  market-place,  and  the  in- 
habitants near  petitioned,  on  the  4th  of  May,  1738,  "for  liberty  to 
erect  a  publick  market-house,  at  their  own  cost  and  charge,  in  Broad 
Street,  between  the  'Watch-House'  and  the  dwelling-house  of  John 
Lashby ;"  which  was  granted,  and  a  Committee  was  appointed  "  to 
stake  out  the  place."  This  Watch-House  was  located  near  the  City 
Hall,  according  to  the  report  of  a  Committee  on  the  6th  of  August, 
1781,  in  giving  a  description  of  the  materials  to  build  the  Watch- 
House,  "  at  the  upper  end  of  the  Broad  Street,  near  the  City  Hall," 
and  also  from  a  Map  drawn  by  David  Orim,  of  this  city,  as  it  was 
in  1742.  No  doubt  the  "  house  and  lot "  for  sale,  noticed  before,  of 
Mary  Lashby's,  was  the  one  here  noticed  as  John  Lashby's,  at  the 
corner  of  Flattenbarrack  Street. 

I  am  inclined  to  think  that  no  market-house  was  ever  erected 
here,  as  we  find  no  notices  of  it  in  the  laws,  advertisements,  Ac; 
that  if  used  as  such  after  this  period,  it  was  principally  as  a  marked 
place  where  country  people  in  their  wagons  and  other  vehicles  stop- 
ped to  sell  their  produce. 


THURMAN'S  SLIP  MARKET-PLAOE. 

1733.  A  PETITION  before  the  Council,  on  the  6th  of  April,  1738, 
from  "  divers  freeholders  and  inhabitants  of  the  West  Ward  of  this 
city,  showeth,  that  great  numbers  of  farmers  and  other  persons  from 
the  Jersey  side  and  up  the  North  River  do  frequently  land  (with 
their  grain  and  other  provisions  for  the  market)  at  'Thurman's 
Slip/  which  is  a  very  convenient  landing,  but  for  want  of  a  public 
market-house  there,  are  very  often  put  to  considerable  expense  and 
great  inconvenience  for  entering  and  carrying  their  goods  for  sale, 
which  very  much  tends  to  the  discouragement  of  trade  in  general. 
The  petitioners  humbly  pray  the  leave  and  lycense  of  the  Board  to 
erect  and  build,  by  voluntary  contributions,  a  public  market-house  in 
some  convenient  place  in  said  slip."  Although  their  petition  was 
granted,  yet  it  was  not  built,  as  will  appear  from  further  proceedings. 
*  Independent  Reflector. 


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THURMAN'S   SLIP   MARKET-PLACE.  261 

The  location  of  this  intended  market-place  was  between  the 
present  Liberty  and  Coortiandt  Streets,  on  the  line  of  Greenwich 
Street,  and  at  that  period  just  above  Ellison's  Dock.  This  was  the 
great  landing-place  for  many  years,  in  fact,  until  the  Grown  and 
Bear  Markets  were  established,  for  the  market-boats  of  all  sizes, 
and  on  their  arrival  a  great  deal  of  trading  in  wood,  provisions,  Ac, 
was  transacted,  which  in  a  measure  made  it  a  market-place,  although 
no  market-house  was  built,  nor  was  it  recognized  by  law. 

Professor  Ealm,  in  his  Travels,  says:  *'  As  he  was  sailing  up  the 
North  River,"  in  the  year  1748,  "  all  the  afternoon  (June  10)  we 
saw  a  whole  fleet  of  little  boats  returning  from  New  York,  whither 
they  had  brought  provisions  and  other  goods  for  sale;  which,  on  ac- 
count of  the  extensive  commerce  of  this  town,  and  the  great  number 
of  its  inhabitants,  go  off  very  well."  "  During  eight  months  of  the 
year  this  (Hudson)  river  is  full  of  yachts  and  other  greater  and 
lesser  vessels,  either  going  to  New  York  or  returning  from  thence, 
laden  either  with  inland  or  foreign  goods."  "The  country  people 
come  to  market  in  New  York  twice  a  week,  much  in  the  same  man- 
ner as  they  do  at  Philadelphia:*  with  this  difference— that  the 
markets  are  here  kept  in  several  places." 

"  The  water-melons,  which  are  cultivated  near  the  town,  grow 
very  large ;  they  are  extremely  delicious,  and  are  better  than  in 
other  parts  of  North  America;  though  they  are  planted  in  the 
open  fields,  and  never  in  a  hot-bed.  I  saw  a  water-melon  at  Gov- 
ernor Clinton's,  in  September,  1750,  which  weighed  forty-seven 
English  pounds^  and  at  a  merchant's  in  town  another  of  forty-two 
pounds  weight;  however,  they  were  reckoned  the  biggest  ever  seen 
in  this  country." 

No  doubt  ihe  wealthy  baker,  John  Thurman,  who  owned  consid- 
erable property  in  Crown  {Liberty)  Street,  wished  to  improve  it  by 
having  this  market-place  established  near  by.  From  his  petition  in 
1785,  asking  for  a  water-lot  in  front  of  one  of  his  on  the  North  River, 
he  says,  "  He  was  in  possession  of  and  in  a  certain  messuage  and  lot 
of  ground  in  the  West  Ward  of  the  City  of  New  York,  fronting  the 
North  River,  and  extending  to  low-water  mark,  adjoining  to  Crown 
Street  Slip,  and  lying  on  the  north  side  thereof,  of  the  breadth  of 
one  hundred  and  ten  feet  or  thereabouts,  and  in  consideration  of  the 
custom  which  this  Corporation  has  always  been  pleased  to  observe 
in  granting  to  the  citizens  and  freeholders  of  this  city  the  land  or 
water-lotts  fronting  the  several  lotts  of  land  of  which  they  have  been 


Several  years  after,  Mr.  Thurman  met  with  considerable  loss  here, 

•  See  Philadelpbia  lUrkeli,  toU  IL 


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262 


THUBMAN'S   BLIP   MARKET-PLACE. 


by  having  tux)  lives  and  his  dwelling-house  destroyed  by  fire,  whioh 
is  noticed  in  the  N.  Y.  Mercury,  March  24, 1760,  as  follows :  '' Aboat 
11  o'clock,  on  the  night  of  the  17  th  instant,  a  terrible  fire  broke  out 
in  the  loft  of  a  back  kitchen  belonging  to  and  adjoining  the  house 
of  Mr.  John  Thurman,  at  the  North  River,  in  this  city,  occasioned 
through  the  carelessness  of  a  negro  wench,  by  her  sticking  a  candle 
to  a  beam  in  the  loft  when  she  went  to  put  her  two  children  to  sleep. 
The  fire  got  to  a  great  highth  before  it  was  discovered ;  soon  con- 
sumed the  kitchen,  a  store-house  contiguous  thereto,  and  Mr.  Thur- 
man's  dwelling-house,  with  the  greater  part  of  his  furniture ;  but  the 
flames  were  prevented  from  spreading  further,  though  the  wind  was 
pretty  high,  owing  to  the  activity  of  the  inhabitants.  Mr.  Thurman's 
loss  is  very  considerable;  the  houses  being  his  own  property,  as  well 
as  two  negro  children  that  perished  in  the  flames." 

In  the  early  part  of  the  year  1788,  another  petition  was  presented 
by  divers  of  Ae  freeholders  and  inhabitants  of  the  West  Ward,  who 
state:  "On  or  about  the  sixth  day  of  April,  1738,  preferred  a  peti- 
tion to  the  then  Common  Council,  wherein  they  prayed  leave  and  ly- 
cense  to  erect  and  build,  by  voluntary  contributions,  a  public  market- 
house  in  some  convenient  place  in  '  Thurman's  Slip.'  It  was  ordered 
the  prayer  thereof  should  be  granted,  and  that  the  then  Aldermen 
and  Assistants  of  the  said  ward  should  direct  a  public  market  to  be 
made  and  erected  in  such  convenient  place  thereabout  as  they  should 
judge  most  requisite  for  the  publick  good.  Your  petitioners  cannot 
assign  reason  for  the  neglect  of  the  then  Aldermen  and  Assistants 
in  not  directing  a  convenient  place  in  the  said  slip  for  that  purpose. 
Thurman's  Slip  is  a  very  proper  place,  and  hath  a  very  convenient 
landing ;  that  great  numbers  of  country  people,  as  well  from  Tappaa 
and  other  places  up  the  North  River,  as  from  the  Jersies,  do  fre- 
quently land  there  with  provisions  and  other  necessaries  for  the  mar» 
kets,  and  we  have  great  reason  to  believe  that  much  greater  num* 
bers  would  frequent  and  come  to  it,  if  proper  conveniences  were 
made  and  provided  for  them*  Tour  petitioners  further  humbly  pr^ 
sume  to  beg  that  a  committee  may  be  appointed  to  direct  and  ascer- 
tain the  place  in  said  slip  where  a  publick  market-house  may  be 
erected,"  &c.  This  was  signed  by  the  following  persons: 
Harmanuis  Schuyler,      Sarah  Lyell,  John  Thurman, 

James  Ackland,  Ann  Huddlest         Petrns  Rutgers, 

Jacobus  Stoutenburgh,    Elenor  Morris,        David  Abeel, 
Evardus  Brouwer,  Elizabeth  Decay,     Johannes  Brouwer, 

Adam  King, 
Mattys.  Rack, 
Job  Earle, 
Benjamin  Cain, 


John  Peers, 
Jacob  Brouwer, 
Johannis  Boogert, 
Jacobus  Montanye, 


Harme  Stout, 
Johani^esVan  Orden, 
Jacob  Hoonik, 
James  Eenneydy. 


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BBOADWAT    MARKET.  263 

A  report  on  fhe  above  was  made  on  the  12th  of  April,  in  the 
irords  f<dIowiBg:  ''We  have  viewed  the  said  slip  and  street,  and 
find  the  same  to  be  twenty-eight  and  a  half  feet  wide.  Unless  the 
owners  of  the  land  bounding  on  each  eide  of  the  said  slip  will  leave  so 
mnch  land  for  the  use  of  this  Corporation,  aecording  to  a  draft  made 
of  the  said  street  and  slip  signed  by  ns,  and  have  the  same  recorded 
accordingly,  we  find  no  conveniency  there  to  build  or  erect  a  mar- 
ket-house/' These  refusals  did  not  deter  the  ''  neighborhood,^'  but 
caused  them  to  look  about  for  a  new  location,  whioh  they  found  at 
the  foot  of  the  street  above,  which  had  become,  in  1742,  known  as 
Courtlandt  Street.  So  in  the  month  of  July  of  that  year,  t^ey  again 
petition,  that  they  "haveing  an  inclination  to  build  a  publick  markitt^ 
house,  at  their  own  cost  and  charge,  in  a  slipp  or  street  called  and 
known  by  the  name  of  Oortlandes  Street,  being  in  the  above  said 
ward,  for  flie  use  of  the  inhabitants  of  this  city.  We  humbly  pray 
your  worshipps  to  grant  and  release  to  us,  the  petitioners,  the  pre* 
velidge  for  bulding  such*  markitt-house  for  the  use  above  said.''  This 
was  also  rejected  on  the  16th  of  July  following;  but  thirty  years 
after  the  Grown  Market  was  introduced,  to  which  the  reader  is 
referred. 

In  the  year  1764,  "Thurman's  Dock"  was  noticed  in  theN.  Y, 
Mercury,  on  the  16th  of  December,  when  "  W.  Wood  "  says:  "  The 
Albany  Post  Inll  set  out  on  the  17th  instant  for  the  Gity  of  Albany 
from  Ms  house  on  ThurfMin^a  Dock  at  the  North  River/'  • 


"BROADWAY    MARKET." 

1738.  The  petition  for  the  erection  of  a  markeMioQse  in  the 
Broadway,  near  Liberty  Street,  in  1788,  is  quite  an  original  in 
style,  but  no  doubt  it  was  drawn  up  to  suit  the  age.  It  was 
brought  before  the  "Board  "  on  the  13th  of  April  of  that  year,  of 
which  the  following  appears  on  record:  "Upon  a  petition  which 
was  presented  by  the  chiefest  part  of  the  Inhabitants  ^f  the  West 
Ward,  and  also  great  numbers  of  the  North  Ward,  live  at  a  great 
distance  from  any  of  the  publick  markett-houses,  which  makes  it 
very  unconvenient,  and  occasions  a  great  loss  of  time  for  tiiem  and 
their  ifervants  to  attend  the  markette  for  their  fiunily  provirions; 
and  as  there  are  great  quantities  of  provisions  firequently  brought 
from  Hack^xsack,  Tappan^and  othi^r  parts  up  tiie  North  River,  as 


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264  BROADWAY  MARKET. 

well  as  from  the  Ont-Ward. — The  petitioners  are  willing  and  de- 
sirous to  erect  and  build  at  their  own  expense  a  convenient  mar- 
kett-house  for  pnblick  use — of  forty  and  two  feet  and  twenty-five  in 
breadth,  in  the  publick  street  of  the  Broadway,  in  the  middle  of  the 
same,  fronting  the  street  in  which  his  Honor  the  Chief  Justice  lives, 
and  opposite  Crown  (Liberty)  Street — ^to  be  called  the  *  Broadway 
MarkettrHouse;'  that  the  same  be  a  publick  markettrplace  for  all 
sorts  of  Com,  Grain,  and  Meal  that  may  be  brought  down  the 
Hudson  River,  and  to  be  sold  at  no  other  marketrplace  in  this  City 
except  the  pnblick  Meal  Market  in  Wall  Street."  It  was  ordered 
that  "  the  prayer  of  the  petitioners  be  granted,  and  to  be  finished 
within  three  months.'' 

The  position  of  this  new  market-place  attracted  all  the  produce, 
such  as  grain  and  flour,  that  came  down  the  North  River,  as  well 
as  a  great  deal  from  Long  Island;  and  those  millers  and  farmers 
that  came  by  water  from  a  distance  were  obliged  to  have  their 
slaves  to  assist  them,  rowing  down  to  the  markets  and  back,  al- 
though they  always  took  advantage  of  the  tides.  Many  of  these 
slaves  brought  along  their  perquisites,  which  they  retailed  around 
the  streets,  as  it  appears  they  had  been  in  the  habit  of  doing  many 
years  before.  This  had  introduced  an  illegitimate  sort  of  traffic 
with  the  Indians  and  many  negro  slaves  of  the  city,  who  had  spare, 
or  stolen,  time  enough  to  make  a  little  spending-money.  It  finally 
became  so  grievous  to  their  masters,  that  a  law  was  passed,  in  the 
month  of  August,  1740,  which  provided,  "After  the  ringing  of  three 
bells  and  proclamation  made  for  silence,  was  published,  ^  A  Law  to 
prohibit  Negroes  and  other  Slaves  vending  Indian  Com,  Peaches, 
or  any  other  Fruit  within  this  City.'  Whereas,  of  late  years  great 
numbers  of  Negroes,  Indians,  and  Mulattoes,  slaves,  have  made  it  a 
common  practice  of  buying,  selling,  and  exposing  to  sale,  not  only 
in  houses,  out-houses,  and  yards,  but  likewise  on  the  publick  streets, 
great  quantities  of  boiled  Indian  corn,  peas,  peaches,  apples,  and 
other  kind  of  fruit;  which  pernicious  practice  is  not  only  detri* 
mental  to  the  masters,  mistresses,  and  owners  of  such  slaves,  in  re- 
gard they  absent  themselves  from  their  service,  but  is  also  produc- 
tive of  increasing,  if  not  occasions,  many  and  dangerous  fevours, 
and  other  distempers  and  diseases  in  the  inhabitants :  Therefore, 
Be  it  enacted  and  ordained,  That  any  negro,  Indian,  or  mulatto 
slave  be  convicted  before  the  Mayor,  Recorder,  Ac,  of  any  of  the 
above  acts,  shall  be  publickly  whipped  at  the  whipping-post,  unless 
the  master,  mistress,  shall  pay  to  the  person  or  officer  ii^orming  of 
such  offence  the  sum  of  six  shillings,  current  money  of  this  Colony: 
one-half  thereof  to  such  informer,  and  the  other  half  to  the  Treas- 
urer of  this  City." 


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BROADWAY   MARKET.  265 

Manj  of  these  slaves  had  become  otherwise  troublesome,  as  they 
held  daily  and  nightly  cabals,  forming  themselves  into  parties  or 
clubs,  thieving,  &c.  Some  called  themselves  ''Free  Masons;"  oth- 
ers after  a  liquor  they  were  fond  of— " Geneva  Club;"  others 
"Smith  Ply  Boys;"  and  others,  again,  as  "Long  Bridge  Boys." 
We  find  their  influence  extended  among  the  slaves  of  some  parts 
of  the  country,  and  no  doubt  this  came  from  the  fact  that  their 
landing-place  at  the  North  River  was  near  John  Hughson's,  the 
head-quarters,  where  originated  the  "great  negro  plot  of  1741." 
Hughson's  residence  was  near  (the  Cooper's,  Gerardus,)  "  Comfort's 
Dock,"  and  directly  opposite  Comfort's  house.  (The  location  now 
is  between  Thames  and  Cedar,  on  the  line  of  Greenwich  Street.) 
Near  by  was  the  then  famous  toeU  which  supplied  many  of  the 
citizens  with  "Comfort's  Tea-Water." 

Hughson  was  a  shoemaker  by  trade,  says  Horsmanden,  but  "kept 
a  VQry  disorderly  house,  and  sold  to  and  entertained  negroes  there" 
with  "playing  at  dice" — ^frolicking;  a  witness  says,  "he  saw  a 
great  many  of  them  in  a  room,  dancing  to  a  fiddle,  and  Hughson's 
wife  and  daughter  along  with  them."  His  house  was  open  for  the 
negroes,  "  and  he  entertained  them  at  all  times ;  those  diat  had  no 
money,  at  free  cost."  He  employed  "  some  of  the  head  negroes  as 
agents  under  him,  to  decoy  other  negroes.  Comfort's  negro  Jack, 
one  of  the  captains  of  these  bands  of  fools,  had  so  well  approved 
his  parts  and  capacity  to  Hughson  and  the  rest,  that  he  had  a  dep- 
utation for  swearing  such  converts  as  he  made,  either  abroad  or  at 
home;  and  in  both  cases  had  great  opportunities  of  caballing  with 
negroes;  for  his  master  was  frequently  absent  from  home  for  sev- 
eral weeks  together,  insomuch  that  Captain  Jack  looked  upon  the 
house  as  his  own,  and  himself  as  his  own  master.  To  this  well, 
every  morning  and  evening,  resorted  negroes  from  all  the  quarters 
of  the  town,  for  '  tea-water,' "  with  whom  he  introduced  this  sub- 
ject. There  is  no  doubt  but  some  of  the  country  slaves,  in  their 
almost  daily  visits  to  the  city,  while  landing  so  near  these  head- 
quarters, became  acquainted  with  this  contemplated  conspiracy,  as 
"many  cabals  of  negroes  had  been  discovered,  particularly  in 
Queens  County,  on  Nassau  {alias  Long  Island.)  The  negroes  had 
there  formed  themselves  into  a  Company  about  Christmas  last;  by 
way  of  play  or  diversion,  had  mustered  and  trained  with  the  bor- 
rowed arms  and  accoutrements  of  their  masters."  These  negroes 
were  found  out,  and  punished. 

Early  in  the  month  of  May,  (1741,)  "  at  Hackensack,  in  New 
Jersey,  eight  miles  from  this  city,  the  inhabitants  of  that  place 
were  alarmed  about  an  hour  before  day,  and  presented  with  a  most 


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286  BH.QADWAT  MABKST* 

melaneholy  and  aflfrighting  scene  I  No  less  than  seven  barns  in 
that  neighborhood  were  all  in  flames;  and  the  fire  had  got  soch 
head,  that  all  assistance  was  in  vain;  for  in  a  short  time  they  were 
bnrnt  down  to  the  ground.  Two  negroes,  the  one  belonging  to 
Derick  Van  Hoorn,  the  other  to  Albert  Van  Yoerheise,  were  sob* 
pected  to  have  been  guilty  of  this  fact;  the  former  having  been 
seen  coming  out  of  <me  of  the  bams  with  a  gnn  laden,  who  pre* 
tended,  on  being  discovered,  that  he  saw  the  person  who  had  fired 
the  barns,  upon  which  his  masten  ordered  him  to  fire  at  him ;  and 
the  negro  thereupon  immediately  discharged  his  piece;  but  no 
blood  was  drawn  from  any  mortal,  that  could  be  discovered.  The 
latter  was  found  at  Us  master's  house  loading  a  gun  with  two  bul* 
lets,  which  he  had  in  his  hand  ready  to  put  in.  Upon  these  and 
other  presumptive  circumstances  and  proofs,  both  negroes  were  ap* 
prehended,  and  in  a  few  days  tried,  convicted,  and  burnt  at  a  stake. 
The  former  confessed  he  had  set  fire  to  three  of  the  bams;  the 
latter  would  confess  nothing.''    (See  "0Zc2  SUp  Market:') 

This  "  Tea-Water  Well"  of  Comfort's,  as  previously  noticed,  was 
somewhat  famous,  and  frequently  referred  to  in  Horsmanden's 
Great  Negro  Plot.  No  doubt  its  water  must  have  been  superior 
to  all  the  other  public  wells,  as  it  was  sought  after  morning  and 
evenii^,  and  cairried  away  in  keg^  by  the  slaves  of  many  of  the 
principal  citiasens,  many  years  before  this  great  n^rp  plot  took 
places 

.  The  famous  ''Tea-Water  Pt^mp,"  which  still  lives  in  the  recoUeo* 
tions  of  some  old  ;citU5^is,  was  a  different  well,  or  rather  a  finoi 
flowing  spring  in  a  well,  which  no  doubt  originally  assisted  in 
forming  the  ''  Fresh  Water"  or  "  Kolch  Pond."  This  was  located 
on  or  about  the  present  northeast  comer  of  Orange  and  Chatham 
Streets.  Professor  KaJm,  while  visiting  New  York  in  1748,  first 
notices  this  spring^and  says:  ''  There  is  no  good  water  in  the  town 
itself,  but  at  a  little  distance  there  is  a  large  spring  of  good  wa- 
ter, which  the  inhabitants  take  for  their  tea,  and  for  the  use  of  the 
kitchen."  This,  no  doubt,  soon  became  their  chief  source  of  supply 
for  '^  tea-:water;"  and  when  it  began  to  be  carried  in  hogsheads  on 
the  carts,  it  was  quite  necessary  to  have  a  sort  of  engiiie  to  raise 
the  wat^r  high  enoughs  to  ran  into  these  hogsheads;  and  no  doubt 
this  mgiw  was  about  the  first  common  pump  introduced  here. 
Montressor,  on  his  Map,  (No>.  6,)  in  the  year  1775,  notes  it  as  the 
'*  Fresh-Water  Engine,  from  which  the  town  is  supplied."  In  the 
Bevolntioft  it  is  advertised  thus;  "Proposals  in  writing  will  be 
received  b^the  Ye8tiry,,at  the  Aims-House,  on  Monday,  the  2d  of 
April,  (1781,)  flDom  snoh  peraoins  as,  may  be  desirous  of  renting  the 


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BROADWAY   JIABKBT.  267 

*Tea*Water  Pmnp'  for  the  ensning  year."*  Three  years  after, 
(1784,)  "Abraham  Severe  committed  suicide,  who  lately  occupied 
tiie  'Tea-Water  Piimp;'"t  and  about  the  same  period,  '^a  corre- 
spondeBt  recommends  to  the  attention  of  the  magistrates  a  nui- 
sance generally  complained  of  in  this  dry,  warm  season.  A  number 
of  people  assembled  round  the  pond  (Collect)  from  whence  the  tea- 
water  is  raised,  and  wash  their  dirty  linen.  It  is  unnecessary  to 
expatiate  upon  the  utility  of  preventing  the  continuance  of  a  prac- 
tice which  has  a  manifest  tendency  to  affect  the  health  of  the  inhab- 
itants of  this  city.'^t  Then  we  findr-''Eig^t  or  nine  lots  of 
ground,  (io  he  sold  J  of  one  hundred  feet  in  length,  and  twenty-fiye 
in  width,  situate  behind  the  Tea-Waier  Fump,  between  that  and 
the  fresh-water  pond,  /CoOedJ  with  the  buildings  thereon — an  ex- 
cellent  stand  for  a  still-house,  brew-house,  or  sugar-house,  as  there 
is  the  best  of  water  all  round  it,  and  it  is  supposed  the  Tea-Water 
Pump  feeds  itself  throu^^  said  lott8."§ 

Winterbotham,  in  his  general  description  of  New  York,  written 
about  the  year  1790,  also  notices  the  "  Tea-Water  Pump,"  as  fol- 
lows: '*Most  of  the  people  are  supplied  every  day  with  fresh  water, 
conveyed  to  their  doors  in  casks,  from  a  spring  almost  a  mile  from 
the  centre  of  the  city.  This  well  is  about  twenty  feet  deep,  and 
four  feet  (in)  diameter.  The  average  quantity  drawn  daily  from 
this  remarkable  well  is  one  hundred  and  ten  hogsheads,  of  one 
hundred  and  thirty,  gallons  each.  In  some  hot  summer-days  two 
hundred  and  sixteen  hogsheads  have  been  drawn  from  it;  and  what 
is  very  singular,  there  are  never  more  or  less  than  three  feet  of 
water  in  the  well.  The  water  b  sold  commonly  at  three-pence  a 
hogshead  at  the  pump." 

A  few  years  after,  the  Minerva  (December  10, 1796,)  states^'' A 
report  having  been  in  circulation  that  the  water  of  the  'Tea-Water 
Pump'  begins  to  fail,  and  also,  that  the  proprietor  will  not  allow 
any  more  water  to  be  drawn  from  it  than  is  absoliitely  necessary 
for  the  use  of  the  citizens  for  tea  and  drinking,  the  subscriber  begs 
leave  to  contradict  the  said  report,  and  inform  the  dtizens.  that 
notwithstanding  the  extremely  dry  season,  the  source  «f  the  tea^ 
water  has  not  in  the  least  diminished;  and  so  fiEur  from  bis  vefusing 
any  demand  for  water,  he  hereby  i  offers  the  citicms  a  plentiinl  sup- 
ply for  washing  or  other  family  uses.  Any  order  for  one  or  more 
hogsheads  of  water,  directing  the  place  where  to  be  delivered,  sent 
to  the  inunp,  will  be  immediately  attended  to.  lie  price  of  the 
water  is  4b.  per  bogshead,  containing  140.  gallons* 

''  William  0.  Thoxpsob/' 

•  B<7ia  Oftietto,  Hmh  )L  .  f  F«u»>  P^ket,  July  Mi 

t  M.  T.  FKkei,  Aaguit  19, 1784.  §  Ibid.,  Oet ». 


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268  BROADWAY  MARKET. 

Two  years  after,  (1798,)  the  reputation  of  this  tearwater  had 
become  decidedly  bad,  if  we  shoald  judge  by  the  following  article^ 
which  says :  **  The  New  Yorkers  have  no  clear,  cool  water  to  slake 
the  thirst — ^yet  they  pretend  their  city  water  is  very  pure  and  nice. 
The  Collect  behind  the  'Tea-Water  Pump'  is  a  shocking  hole, 
where  all  impure  things  centre  together,  and  engender  the  worst 
of  unwholesome  productions.  The  water  has  grown  worse,  mani- 
festly, within  a  few  years.  It  is  time  to  look  out  some  other  sup- 
ply, and  discontinue  the  use  of  water  growing  less  and  less  whole- 
some every  day.  Some  affect  to  say  the  water  is  very  cool  and 
refreshing.  Everybody  knows,  from  experience,  the  water  gets 
warm  in  a  few  hours,  and  sometimes  almost  before  it  is  drawn  from 
the  carter's  hogshead.  Can  you  bear  to  drink  it  on  Sundays  in  the 
summer-time  7  It  is  so  bad  before  Monday  mornings,  as  to  be  very 
sickly  and  nauseating;  and  the  larger  the  city  grows,  the  worse 
this  evil  will  be.  Already  it  has  been  whispered  by  some  vigilant 
travelers  through  our  city,  that  the  New  Yorkers  are  like  the  dog 
in  the  manger — ^they  will  not  provide  aqueducts  themselves,  nor  let 
anybody  else  do  it.  Take  the  matter  into  consideration,  and  re- 
solve, every  man  for  himself,  to  leave  no  stone  unturned  to  have 
this  grand  object  of  watering  carried  through."*  It  was  but  a  year 
or  two  afterwards  when  the  "Manhattan  Water"  took  its  place. 

Although  this  Broadway  Market  was  originally  ordained  as  a  meal 
market,  yet  we  find,  on  the  7th  of  November,  1741,  by  a  Law  then . 
passed,  "  giving  priviledge  to  country  people  to  sell  or  expose  to 
sale  in  the  Meal  Market  ( Wall  Street)  and  Broadway  Market  of 
this  city,  beef,  pork,  veal,  mutton,  and  lamb  by  the  joint,  or  by 
pieces,  cut  up  the  same  in  pounds  or  pound  pieces,  or  in  great  or^ 
small  quantities  or  parcells,  as  they  shall  see  convenient — paying 
in  the  same  manner  and  proportion  that  the  butchers  are  to  do." 
That  is,  "  for  each  head  of  cattle,  one  shilling ;  for  every  hogg  or 
shoat  brought  into  or  cut  out  for  sale  in  any  of  the  market-houses, 
the  same ;  and  for  every  sheep,  calf,  or  lamb,  two-pence." 

The  increasing  amount  of  business  done  here  induced  the  inhab- 
itants of  the  West  Ward,  in  1745,  to  ask  for  "  liberty  to  make  fui 
addition  of  twenty-one  feet  at  the  north  end  of  the  market  in 
Broadway;"  and  soon  after  the  like  addition  was  added  to  the 
south  end. 

No  doubt  the  city  was  in  a  prosperous  condition  at  this  period, 

as  many  improvements  are  noticed,  especially  by  Ealm,  who  says: 

''  In  size  it  comes  nearest  to  Boston  and  Philadelphia;  but  with  re- 

ga];d  to  its  fine  buildings,  its  opulence,  and  extensive  commerce,  it 

. «  DaUy  AdFertlBer,  September  6, 179a 


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BBOADWAT   MABKET.  269 

dispates  the  preference  with  them/'  Of  the  streets  he  sajs:  "Most 
of  them  are  paved,  except  in  high  places,  where  it  has  been  found 
useless.  In  ^e  chief  streets  there  are  trees  planted,  which  in  sum- 
mer give  them  a  fine  appearance,  and  during  the  excessive  heat  at 
that  time,  afford  a  cooling  shade.  I  found  it  extremely  pleasant  to 
walk  in  the  town,  for  it  seemed  quite  like  a  garden.  Most  of  the 
houses  are  built  of  bricks;  and  are  generally  strong  and  neat,  and 
several  stories  high.  Some  had,  according  to  old  architecture, 
turned  the  gable  end  towards  the  streets;  but  the  new  houses  were 
altered  in  this  respect.  Many  of  the  houses  had  a  balcony  on  the 
roof,  on  which  the  people  used  to  sit  in  the  evenings,  in  the  summer 
season.  The  roofs  are  commonly  covered  with  tiles  and  shingles. 
The  walls  were  quite  covered  with  all  sorts  of  drawings  and  pic- 
tures, in  small  frames.  On  each  side  of  the  chimneys  they  had 
usually  a  sort  of  alcove;  and  the  wall  under  the  windows  was 
wainscoted,  and  had  benches  placed  near  it.  The  alcoves  and  all 
the  wood-work  were  painted  with  a  bluish-gray  color.  New  York 
sends  many  ships  to  the  West  Indies,  with  flour,  com,  biscuit,  tim- 
ber, tuns,  boards,  flesh,  fish,  butter,  and  other  provisions ;  together 
with  some  of  the  few  fruits  that  grow  here.  Many  ships  go  to 
Boston,  in  New  England,  with  corn  and  flour,  and  take  in  exchange 
flesh,  butter,  timber,  diffierent  sorts  of  fish,  and  other  articles,  which 
they  carry  further  to  the  West  Indies.''  "The  goods  which  are  ship- 
ped to  the  West  Indies  are  sometimes  paid  for  with  ready  money, 
and  sometimes  with  West  India  goods,  which  are  either  first 
brought  to  New  York,  or  immediately  sent  to  England  or  Holland. 
If  a  ship  does  not  choose  to  take  in  West  India  goods  in  its  return 
to  New  York,  or  if  nobody  will  freight  it,  it  often  goes  to  New- 
castle, in  England,  to  take  in  coals  for  ballast,  which,  when  brought 
home,  sell  for  a  pretty  good  price.  In  many  parts  of  the  town 
coals  are  made  use  of,  both  for  kitchen  fires  and  in  rooms,  because 
they  are  reckoned  cheaper  than  wood,  which  at  present  costs  thirty 
shillings  of  New  York  currency  per  fathom."  "New  York  has  like- 
wise some  intercourse  with  South  Carolina,  to  which  it  sends  com, 
flour,  sugar,  rum,  and  other  goods,  and  takes  rice  in  return,  which 
is  almost  the  only  commodity  exported  from  South  Carolina." 
"The  goods  with  which  the  Province  of  New  York  trades  are  not 
very  numerous.  They  chiefly  export  the  skins  of  animals,  which 
are  bought  of  the  Indians  about  Ostaego;  a  great  quantity  of 
boards,  coming  for  the  most  part  from  Albany ;  timber  and  ready- 
made  lumber,  from  that  part  of  the  country  which  lies  about  the 
river  Hudson ;  and  lastly,  wheat,  flour,  barley,  oats,  and  other  kinds 
of  com,  which  are  brought  from  New  Jersey  and  the  cultivated 


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270  BROADWAY   MARKET. 

parts  of  this  proyince.  I  have  seen  yachts  from  New  Brtinswiek 
laden  with  wheat  which  lay  loose  on  board,  and  with  floor  packed 
in  tuns;  and  also  with  great  quantities  of  linseed.  At  this  time  a 
bushel  of  linseed  is  sold  for  eight  shillings  of  New  York  currency, 
or  exactly  a  piece  of  eight.  New  York  likewise  exports  some  flesh 
(salted  meats)  and  other  proyisions  out  of  its  own  prorince,  but 
they  are  very  few ;  nor  is  the  quantity  of  pease,  which  the  people 
about  Albany  bring,  much  greater." 

"  There  are  several  churches  in  the  town,  which  deserve  some 
attention.  1.  The  English  Church,  built  in  the  year  1695,  at  the 
west  end  of  the  town,  consisting  of  stone;  and  has  a  steeple,  with 
a  bell.  2.  The  new  Dutch  Church,  (Nassau  >&,)  which  is  likewise 
built  of  stone,  is  pretty  large,  and  is  provided  with  a  steeple ;  it 
also  has  a  clock,  which  is  the  ordy  one  in  the  town.  This  church 
stands  almost  due  from  north  to  south.  In  this  church  there  is 
neither  altar,  vestry,  choir,  sconces,  nor  paintings.  Some  trees  are 
planted  around  it,  which  make  it  look  as  if  it  was  built  in  a  wood. 
3.  The  old  Dutch  Church,  which  is  also  built  of  stone.  It  is  not 
so  large  as  the  new  one.  It  was  painted  in  the  inside,  though 
without  any  images,  and  adorned  with  a  small  organ,  of  which 
Governor  Burnet  made  fbem  a  present.  The  men,  for  the  most 
part,  sit  in  the  gallery,  and  the  women  below.  4.  The  Pres- 
byterian Church,  which  is  a  pretty  large  one,  has  but  lately  been 
built.  It  is  of  stone,  and  has  a  steeple  and  a  bell  in  it. 
5.  The  Oerman  Lutheran  Church.  6.  The  Oerman  Re^ 
formed  Church.  7.  The  French  Churchy  for  Protestant  refugees. 
8.  The  Quaker  Meeting- House.  9.  To  these  may  be  added  the 
Jewish  Synagogue.  There  are  many  Jews  settled  in  New  York, 
who  possess  great  privileges.  They  have  a  synagogue  and  houses, 
and  great  country-seats  of  their  own  property,  and  are  allowed  to 
keep  shops  in  town.  They  have  likewise  several  ships,  which  they 
freight,  and  send  out  with  their  own  goods.  In  fine,  they  enjoy  all 
the  privileges  common  to  the  other  inhabitants  of  this  town  and 
province.  During  my  residence  in  New  York  this  time,  and  in  the 
two  next  years,  I  was  frequently  in  company  with  Jews.  I  was  in- 
formed, among  other  things,  that  these  people  never  boiled  any 
meat  for  themselves  on  Saturday,  but  that  they  always  did  it  the 
day  before ;  and  that  in  winter  they  kept  a  fire  during  the  whole 
Saturday.  They  commonly  eat  no  pork ;  yet  I  have  been  told  by 
several  men  of  credit,  that  many  of  them,  (especially  among  the 
young  Jews,)  when  traveling,  did  not  make  the  least  difficulty  about 
eating  this,  or  any  other  meat  that  was  put  before  them;  even 
though  they  were  with  Christians.  Both  men  and  women  were 
dressed  entirely  in  the  English  fashion.^' 


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BROADWAY   MARKBT.  271 

We  now  tarn  to  the  Laws  of  1748,  and  also  those  of  1762,  wherd 
we  find  one  of  the  t's  at  the  end  of  the  word  "  markett/'  which 
notices  it  ^'Broadway  Market;"  bat  the  citizens  had  dropped  this 
name,  and  adopted  another,  manj  years  before.  Aboat  the  year 
1740  the  name  of  '^Oswego"  be<»ime  one  of  the  most  prominent 
snbjects  before  the  people,  and  in  their  cooncils.  The  name  came 
from  a  great  trading-hoose  and  fortification,  which  Governor  Bar- 
net  had  erected  in  1722,  at  the  month  of  the  then  Onondagas 
Siver,  on  Lake  Ontario.  In  a  speedi  made  by  Gk>T6mor  Hnnter 
to  the  ''  Honse,"  April  27, 1741,  on  tiie  war  with  tiie  French,  he 
says:  ''The  preservation  of  Oswego  and  the  fidelity  of  the  Six 
Nations  (of  Indians)  is  of  more  conseqnence  to  the  province  than 
any  other  thing  whatsoever;  and  if  we  lose  them,  no  part  of  the 
country  will  be  safe." 

Great  preparations  were  made  in  this  city  for  the  defence  and 
protection  of  that  fortification.  Enlistment  of  soldiers,  battoes,  pro- 
visions,  all  were  mastered  together  here  at  intervals,  and  sent  to 
the  foot  of  ''  Grown  Street,"  which  was  the  general  landing  and 
starting  place.  Every  article  prepared  for  tiie  expedition  was  sent 
or  directed  to  the  ''Oswego  Landing,"  at  the  foot  of  ^'Oswego 
Street,"  and  the  name  soon  reached  this  marke^place,  as  it  were, 
by  acclamation  of  the  citizens ;  the  same  manner  as  when  Lafayette 
landed  here  in  1825 — everything  afterwards  had  Lafayette  prefixed 
to  it.  "  To  be  sold  at  pnblio  vendne,  on  Wednesday,  the  7th  of 
November  next,  at  10  o'clock,  on  the  premises,  a  dwelling-house, 
bake-honse,  and  lott  of  ground  in  Grown  Street,  commonly  called 
'Oswego  Street:'"* 

Horsmanden  tells  us,  in  his  "  Negro  Plot,"  of  the  many  valuable 
articles  to  be  removed  to  Hnghson's  House:  it "  was  become  a  mart 
of  so  great  note  among  the  negroes,  that  with  them  it  had  obtained 
the  name  of '  Ostoego/  after  the  province  trading-house.'  "t 

Among  the  numerous  articles  sent  to  the  troops  in  the  French 
war,  at  a  late  period,  were  enumerated  in  the  "Patriotism  of  Queens 
County ,"t  Long  Island,  dated  ''Jamaica^  September  25,  1755. — 
This  day,  1,015  sheep,  collected  in  three  days  in  this  county,  were 
delivered  at  New  York  Ferry,  to  be  sent  to  Albany  hy  water, 
which  were  cheerfully  given  for  the  use  of  the  army  now  at  or  near 
Grown  Point."  "  The  good  mothers,  also,  in  a  few  hours  collected 
nearly  70  good  large  cheeses,  and  sent  them  to  New  York,  to  be 
forwarded  with  the  sheep  to  the  army."  Sir  William  Johnson  ac- 
knowledges,  in  the  following  month,  that  he  had  received  "69 
cheeses  and  200  sheep,  being  a  part  of  1,000  raised  In  Queens 

*  GtMite,  Nov.  5, 1759.       f  P.  359.        {  Oodeidook'i  <•  Olden  2tee»,"  Hirt.  UK 


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272  BROADWAY   MARKET. 

Goanty  as  a  present  to  the  armj.  Though  cattle  and  a  few  sheep 
had  been  sent  by  some  of  the  provinces  to  this  troop,  yet  your 
sheep  were  very  seasonable,  and  highly  beneficial.  Your  oheeses 
were  highly  acceptable  and  reviving;  for,  unless  among  some  of 
the  oflScers,  it  was  food  scarcely  known  among  us." 

This  example  induced  Suffolk  County,  also,  to  send  ''  60  head  of 
fat  cattle;  of  which  a  yoke  of  oxen  was  a  special  present  for  the 
late  famous  Hendrickson  and  his  Indian  adherents."  '*  The  women 
of  the  county  are  knitting  several  large  stockings  and  mittens,  to 
be  sent  to  the  poor  soldiers  in  garrisons." 

The  name  of  ''Oswego  Market"  continued  in  the  "papers,"  pe- 
titions, Ac,  in  connection  with  this  market,  until  its  final  close. 
The  "  N.  Y.  Mercury,"  April  29, 1754,  notices—*'  Beading,  writing, 
and  arithmetic  are  carefully  taught  at  the  corner  house,  near  the 
Quaker  Meeting-House,  in  Crown  Street,  near  Oswego  Market,  by 
John  Nathan  Hutchins."  This  man  was  the  first  idmanac-maker 
here,  which  was  a  smoky,  dingy-looking  pamphlet,  with  a  string 
tied  through  the  back  and  top;  always  found  hanging  up  alongside 
of  the  old  fire-place,  in  company  with  the  bellows,  iron-holder,  a 
goose's  wing,  and  oiYiev  fixings  belonging  to  the  kitchen  of  all  well- 
regulated  farm-houses.  Then,  in  the  same  paper,  May  1 — ''Edward 
Willet,  who  lately  kept  the  *  Horse  and  Cart  Inn,'  in  this  city,  is 
removed  into  the  house  of  the  Honorable  James  De  Lancy,  Asq., 
Lieutenant-Governor,  at  the  sign  of  the  '  Province  Arms,'  in  the 
Broadway,  near  'Oswego  Market  J  ^*  The  "Gazette,"  April  25, 
1763,  notices — "  Peter  T.  Curtenius,  opposite  the  Oswego  Market, 
has,  besides  hardware,  a  parcel  of  the  best  black  wampum  (Indian 
money)  to  dispose  of."  Again,  "  Mercury,"  May  28d,  1768— "John 
Balthus  Dash,  tinman,  acquaints  his  customers  that  he  has  nioved 
from  the  Oswego  Market  into  the  corner  house  where  Nicholas 
Stagg  formerly  lived."  Marschalk,  on  his  Map  of  New  York, 
(1755,)  gives  it  also  the  name  of  Ostoego  Market,  which  had  then 
become  the  common  one. 

Grant  Thorburn,  in  a  letter  to  the  Editors  of  the  "  Home  Jour- 
nal," says :  "  I  have  just  parted  with  my  old  neighbor,  Mrs.  Van 
Antwerp,  now  residing  at  No.  48  Maiden  Lane,  in  the  ninety-first 
year  of  her  age.  She  afilrms  that  the  Oswego  Market  stood  in  the 
very  centre  of  Broadway.  In  her  young  days,  her  brother,  Alder* 
man  Bogart,  known  as  the  best  biscuit,  tea-cake,  and  rusk  baker  in 
the  city,  and  who,  in  past  generations,  on  the  west  corner  of 
Cortlandt  Street  and  Broadway ;  there  he  daily  fed  the  hungry,  and 
yearly  gave  cookies  to  the  Dutch  Church  charity  scholars."  In  re- 
lation to  this  market's  removal  into  Maiden  Lane,  Mr.  Thorburn's 
evidence  is  wrong,  as  will  be  seen  in  the  following  pages. 


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BBOADWAY  MAfiKBT.  273 

Prior  to  1762,  hay  waa  usnally  sold  by  the  wagon,  cart-load,  or 
ludf-Ioad ;  and  it  was  found,  by  experience,  the  loads  were  very  an* 
equal,  whidi  brought  many  disputes  and  controversies  between  the 
boatmen  and  cartmen,  and  then,  again,  by  the  buyer  and  oartmen. 
It  was  thought  there  should  be  fixed  certain  weights  and  certain 
places  to  weigh  the  hay ;  this  law  established  one  of  the  places  at 
this  market.  That  ''from  and  after  the  20th  of  September,  1762,  hay 
shall  be  sold  by  the  hundred  weight  of  112  lbs.;"  and  it  was  also 
*' Ordained,  that  proper  and  conyenient  machines,  or  engines,  and 
scales  and  weights  for  weighing  carts  and  waggons,  and  hay,  sliall 
be  made,  erected,  furnished,  and  provided,  at  the  three  following 
places  in  this  city,  to  witt:  one  machine  or  engine,  with  scales  and 
weights,  shall  be  made,  erected,  and  set  up  and  supplied,  at  or  near 
the  south  end  of  the  market,  commonly  called  the  Broadway  Mar* 
kel,  in  this  city;  one  other  at  the  White  Hall  Slip;  and  the  other 
at  or  near  the  dwelling-house  of  the  Widow  Van  Keuren,  in  Mont- 
gomerie  Ward.  Isaac  Van  Hook  is  hereby  authorized  to  take 
charge  of  the  one  at  the  market;  Richard  Weston  at  White  Hall 
Slip;  and  John  De  Peyster,  Jun'r,  at  or  near  the  house  of  Widow 
Van  Keuren.  For  the  weighing  of  hay,  one  shilling  and  sixpence ; 
one-half  by  the  seller,  and  the  other  by  the  buyer.  Carts  and 
waggons  to  be  weighed  without  charge;  and  the  weight,  in  plain  or 
legible  figures,  upon  the  after  part  of  the  shaft,  by  the  above  offi- 
cers. The  rates  to  be  charged,  4s.  if  pitched  into  a  stable;  but  if 
thrown  down  in  the  street,  Ss.,  and  no  more." 

From  the  above,  we  find  this  marke^place  noticed  as  the  ^'Broad- 
vxty  Market  ;^^  and  the  next  year,  in  a  petition,  it  is  found  with 
another  name.  This  states,  "  That  the  Crown  Market,  (more  com- 
monly called  the  '  Oswego  Market,^)  in  the  Broadway,  is  at  so  great 
a  distance  from  the  North  River,  that  the  country  produce  brought 
down  and  across  the  said  river,  to  supply  the  markets  of  the  city,  must 
be  carried  in  carts  from  the  different  ships  and  wharfs  on  the  North 
River  to  the  said  Grown  Market  J^  They  wish  "  a  new  market  at 
the  foot  of  Courtlandt  Street  or  Messier's  Dock." 

An  unfortunate  occurrence  took  place  near  this  market  three 
years  after,  noticed  in  the  "press"  September  18, 1766.  "On  Mon- 
day last,  a  negro  man  was  driving  a  chair,  in  which  was  a  nurse 
and  two  small  children  of  Mr.  Verplank,  of  this  city,  merchant. 
As  they  were  passing  Oswego  Market,  a  dog  flew  out  at  the  horse, 
which  occasioned  him  to  start  and  fall  down  before,  whereby  the 
driver  was  thrown  off,  and  the  nurse  and  two  children  fell  on  the 
rump  of  the  horse,  and  from  thence  to  the  ground.  The  eldest 
child,  a  little  boy,  escaped  unhurt;  the  nurse  was  bruised  with  the 
Vol.  I.— 18 


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274  BBOADWAY  MARKET. 

fall ;  bat  nnhappilj,  the  little  girl,  about  three  years  old,  fell  sear 
the  hind  feet  of  the  horse,  who,  straggling  violently  to  recover 
himself,  before  the  child  could  be  taken  away,  gave  it  two  mortal 
strokes  on  the  head,  of  which  it  died  in  less  than  half  an  hour/'* 

At  this  period  (1770)  this  market  was  doing  a  large  business; 
bat  Broadway  was  so  glutted  up  in  business  hours,  that  many  vehi- 
cles could  not  pass  and  repass :  this  caused  many  complaints. 

Several  butchers  are  noticed  on  a  petition,  occupying  stands 
here,  from  which  we  find  the  following: 

William  Norman,        John  Faulkner,    Edw.  Rack  WolflF, 
Jacob  Otte,  William  Fray,      Christopher  Stamler, 

Prantiz  W.  Cornell,    Julian  Pine,         John  Onderline. 

The  cost  of  the  sweeping  the  Ostoego  Market,  from  a  bill  pre- 
sented, from  19th  September  to  the  16th  January,  1770 — 123  days, 
at  6d.  per  day — ^by  George  Helbert,  amounted  to  ^3,  Is.,  6d.  John 
Hagelman  also  swept  it  at  the  same  price. 

In  the  early  part  of  the  next  year,  (1771,)  the  records  show  this 
market  was  indicted  as  a  nuisance.  ''  It  represents  that  a  certain 
street  in  the  City  of  New  York,  commonly  called  the  Broadway, 
situated  and  being  in  the  West  Ward,  is  a  certain  ancient  street 
and  highway  of  our  sovereign  Lord  and  the  King,  George  the 
Third,  Ac,  and  used  for  all  the  liege  subjects  of  our  said  Lord  the 
King,  their  horses,  coaches,  Ac,  to  go,  return,  pass,  Ac,  at  their 
will  and  pleasure.  That  in  the  middle  of  the  said  common  street 
and  highway  stands  a  certain  building,  Ac,  called  the  Ostoego 
Market,  which  obstructs  the  street." 

The  Attorney-General  moved  for  a  writ  to  the  Sheriff  to  pros*- 
trate  without  delay  the  Ostcego  Market;  but  it  was  afterwards 
''Ordered,  that  unless  the  said  indictment  is  traversed  within  twen- 
ty days,  that  a  writ  be  ordered  to  abate  the  same."  The  Commit- 
tee were  ordered  to  employ  Mr.  Duane  as  counsel  in  defence  of  said 
indictment. 

The  indictment  against  this  market-place  created  a  great  sensation 
with  all  classes,  and  more  particularly  with  the  owners  of  prop- 
erty around  it ;  but,  as  they  all  thought  it  could  not  be  retained  in 
that  location,  they  wished  to  have  another  as  near  it  as  possible 
Some  wished  it  near  the  North  River;  others,  in  Maiden  Lane, 
near  Broadway ;  but  the  largest  number  wished  the  location  to  be 
in  the  present  part.  Broadway,  at  this  time,  from  the  Government 
House  (Battery)  to  Vesey  Street,  was  generally  known  as  **  The 
Broadway"  and  "Broadway  Street;"  and  from  Vesey  Street  up  to 
sand-hill  cross-road,  (afterwards  Art  Street,  now  Waverley  Place,) 

«N.Y.  6tti«tie,&o. 


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BROADWAY   MARKET.  276 

"St.  George,"  or  "Great  George  Street."  This  was,  however, 
changed  on  the  24th  February,  1794,  by  the  Board,  and  "  ordered 
one  continued  street,  and  that  it  be  called  'Broadway/  " 

In  the  month  of  March,  (1771,)  a  petition  from  fifty-nine  "of  the 
neighborhood"  was  presented  to  the  Common  Council,  "  praying  to 
grant  them  the  priviledge  to  erect,  at  their  own  expense,  a  market- 
house  in  the  Fields,  (Park,")  And  "  if  the  Oswego  Market  should 
be  removed  to  the  North  River,  it  might  be  convenient  for  some  few 
inhabitants,  and  the  particular  interest  of  others."  But  "  if  a  con- 
venient market  was  erected  in  a  proper  part  of  the  Fidde,  it  most 
certainly  would  answer  many  good  and  efScient  ends — being  more 
in  the  centre  of  the  city ;  the  city  tenants  residing  at  and  about 
Incklan  Barrack,  the  farmers  and  others,  from  all  parts  of  the  Bow- 
ery and  Eingsbridge  road,  who  pay  considerable  taxes,  Ac." 

This  was  followed  by  another,  signed  by  four  hundred  and  forty- 
one  of  the  "  principal  inhabitants,"  who  state  that,  *'  We,  the  sub- 
scribers hereunto,  join  in  humble  petition,  craving  that  if  the  Oswego 
Market  is  to  be  removed,  that  there  may  be  a  market  erected  in  the 
Fidds  instead  thereof."    Among  the  signers  were 

Marinus  Willet,        Nicholas  Bayard,  Edward  Burling, 

Henry  Kip,  Corns.  Roosvelt,  William  Ellsworth, 

David  Grim,  David  Waldron,  John  Minuse, 

and  others. 

More  than  one  hundred  and  twenty-five  "  carmen  "  also  petition ; 
and  state,  that  "  in  case  the  Oatvego  Market  should  be  removed,  that 
you  will  be  pleased  to  grant  liberty  to  erect  a  publick  market  at  a 
proper  place  in  the  Fidda — ^being  thoroughly  convinced  that  it  will 
not  only  tend  to  thetr  own  maintenance^  but  to  the  benefit  and  con- 
venience of  the  publick  in  general,  and  the  poor  in  particular." 
The  "carmen"  thought  if  the  location  was  made  at  the  "North 
River,"  a  large  share  of  their  business  would  be  cut  off  from  carting 
the  large  quantity  of  produce  that  came  by  the  water. 

The  owners  of  property  around  this  market-place  finding  they 
were  going  to  lose  it,  petitioned,  on  the  24th  of  April  following, 
for  aid  to  assist  in  erecting  a  market-house  in  Maiden  Lane,  near 
Broadway.  They  state  that  they  *'  have  purchased  their  estates  at 
an  advanced  price,  in  confidence  that  a  grant  from  the  Corporation 
was  a  sufficient  security  to  them  for  the  market  remaining  where  it 
now  stands;  but  are  fearful  that  the  late  indictment  of  the  Grand 
Jury  will  prevail  against  it.  Thev  have  concluded  to  purchase  one- 
third  of  Conroe's  lot,  on  Maiden  liane,  to  erect  a  market-house  by 
the  assistance  or  the  Corporation."  The  Corporation,  however, 
gave  them  no  encouragement. 


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276  WHITE   HALL   SLIP   MARKET. 

The  qnestion  of  the  removal  of  the  old  "  Broadway, ^^  alias  "  Oswego 
Markei^^  was  at  last  settled,  by  Mr.  Samuel  Jones,  who,  on  the  29th 
of  July  following,  "  delivered  his  opinion,  that  it  would  be  most  ad- 
visable to  remove  Oswego  Market,  as  the  indictment  found  against 
it  cannot  be  defended."  The  Board  "  therefore  agreed  to  take  down 
or  remove  the  same,"  and  soon  after  they  adopted  the  site  of  the 
Bear  Market,  as  the  new  location ;  but  even  after  its  erection  we 
find  a  petition  was  signed  by  tv)o  hundred  and  twenty-five  of  the  citi- 
zens, who  had  appeared  on  the  28th  of  October  following,  "  who 
wish  to  erect  at  their  own  expense  a  market  in  the  Fields"  If  this 
had  been  favorably  received,  and  the  erection  of  a  building  taken 
place,  the  "  Park"  would  have  been  graced  with  an  institution  more 
useful  than  ornamental. 


''WHITE  HALL   SLIP  MARKET." 

1746.  The  location  where  this  markelrhouse  was  erected  in  the 
year  1746  was  an  old-established  market-place.  Near  it,  in  1656, 
"  The  Market-Place  at  the  Strand"  was  established;  then  followed 
the  " Custom-House Bridge  Market"  and  a  short  distance  above  the 
^^ Broad  Street  Market "  had  ceased  to  exist  some  few  years  before; 
and  the  inhabitants  of  this  neighborhood  in  the  South  Ward,  being 
without  a  market-place  near  by,  some  one  hundred  andforty^ix  per- 
sons petitioned  for  **  priviledge  to  erect  and  build  a  market-house  at 
the  east  end  of  Pearl  Street,  and  a  slip  at  the  west  end,  at  their  own 
expense.  A  convenient  slip  may  be  made  for  the  receiving  boats 
and  canoes  that  may  bring  provisions  to  the  same  market." 

Among  the  signers  to  this  petition,  we  find 

Paul  Richards,  Philip  Cortlandt,  Arch'd  Kennedy, 

Edward  Holland,      Isaac  De  Peyster,  and  others. 

At  this  period  Pearl  Street  at  the  west  end  commenced  on  the 
shore,  near  where  now  runs  State  Street,  and  ran  easterly,  or  at  the 
east  end  of  Pearl  Street  ended  in  Whitehall  Street;  from  this  the 
continuation  was  called  Dock  Street.  The  location  of  this  market- 
house,  accordingly,  was  at  the  corner  of  Whitehall  and  Pearl  Streets 
where  it  is  seen  on  the  original  **  South  Prospect  of  y«  flourishing 
City  of  New  York,"  printed  in  London  in  1746,  (in  the  Society  Li- 
brary in  this  city,)  and  is  also  noticed  in  the  Laws  of  1748,  as  the 
^^Market-house  at  the  end  of  Pearl  Street"    The  next  year  the  Oa- 


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WHITE   HALL   SLIP   MARKET.  277 

zette  (August  2ith,  1749,)  states:  "At  Mr.  John  Whiley's,  the  cor- 
ner house  almost  opposite  the  '  White  Hall  Slip  Market/ '' 

White  Hall  took  its  name  from  White  Hall^  London,  and  at  an 
early  day  this  name  became  attached  to  Colonel  Moore's  large 
white  house,  or  hall,  which  stood  close  by  this  market,  and  no  doubt 
gave  this  market-place  the  above  name. 

To  further  prove  the  fact,  that  the  west  end  of  Pearl  Street  be- 
gan on  or  near  the  line  of  the  present  State  Street,  the  N.  Y.  Mer- 
cury, September  7,  1767,  says:  "Yesterday  morning  the  Coroner's 
inquest  set  on  the  body  of  one  William  Eieth,  a  soldier  of  the  16th 
Eegiment,  who  was  found  drowned  near  the  end  of  Pearl  Street^ 
under  the  wall  of  the  Battery." 

The  "old  landing-place  at  the  Strand"  was  yet  popular  with  the 
Indians,  although  there  had  been  the  basins  and  a  bridge  made 
there ;  and  this  part  of  the  petition  for  a  "  slip  at  the  west  end"  was 
to  draw  them  away,  "  it  being  sometimes  much  crowded."  "  Those 
who  knew,"  say :  "I  have  seen  in  1744,  and  after,  several  Indian 
canoes  one  after  another  come  down  the  East  and  North  Rivers,  and 
land  their  cargoes  in  the  basins  near  the  Long  Bridge,  and  take  up 
their  residence  in  the  yard  and  store-house  of  Adolphus  Philips, 
where  they  generally  made  up  their  baskets  and  brooms,  as  they 
could  better  bring  the  rough  materials  with  them  than  ready-made 
baskets  and  brooms.  They  brought  with  them,  when  coming  from 
Long  Island  or  other  sea-shores,  a  quantity  of  dried  clams,  strung 
on  sea-grass  or  straw,  which  they  sold  or  kept  for  their  own  pro- 
visions, besides  the  flesh  of  the  animals  they  killed." 

Adolphus  Philips  appears  to  have  been  a  prominent  and  popular 
merchant,  oflBcer,  and  citizen  in  his  day.  Several  years  before  this 
market-house  was  established,  an  election  had  taken  place  here,  but 
it  appears  it  had  not  been  conducted  as  at  the  present  time.  The 
New  England  Weekly  Journal,  September  12,  1737,  says:  "On 
Saturday  last  came  on  the  election  of  a  representative  to  serve  in 
General  Assembly  for  the  City  and  County  of  New  York,  in  the 
room  of  Captain  Garrit  Van  Horn,  deceased.  The  electors  appeared 
in  the  Fields  {Park,  the  uaval  place  of  election  then)  about  9  o'clock, 
with  drums  beating  and  colors  flying,  trumpets  sounding,  and  violin 
playing.  The  two  candidates  put  up  were  Mr.  Adolphus  Philips 
and  Mr.  Cornelius  Van  Horn.  Most  of  the  merchants  and  gentle- 
men of  the  place  appeared  for  Mr.  Philips,  and  seemed  to  be  the 
greatest  number ;  but  a  poll  was  demanded,  and  thereupon  the  candi- 
dates and  electors  repaired  to  the  City  Hall,  {Broad  Street)  where 
a  poll  was  carried  on  all  day,  till  about  9  o'clock  at  night,  with 
great  warmth  on  both  sides."  Mr.  Philips  received  413,  and  Mr. 
Van  Horn  399  votes;  the  former  was  declared  duly  elected. 


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278  BURLING'S   MARKET. 

This  ma^ke^place  stood  about  four  years,  when  we  find,  on  the 
26th  of  April,  1750,  a  Committee  was  **  empowered  to  agree  with 
several  persons  "  *'  to  remove  the  market-house  near  the  Battery  at 
the  comer  of  Pearl  Street," 


"BURLING'S     MARKET." 

1746.  On  the  28th  of  February,  1746,  a  petition  was  before  the 
Board, ''  from  sundry  inhabitants  of  the  Montgomerie  Ward,''  pray- 
ing "  for  leave  to  build  a  marke^house  in  Rodman's  Slip,  at  their 
own  expense,  was  again  read,  (it  having  been  before  them  at  a  pre- 
vious meeting,)  and  the  priviledge  granted." 

Rodman's  Slip  had  been  previously  known  as  Lyon's  Slip  on 
Lyne's  Map,  1729 ;  but  is  found  with  both  names  in  the  records ;  and 
as  Rodman's  Slip  on  Ratzen's  Map  in  1767.  Prior  to  this  it  was 
occasionally  known  as  '*  Burlin's  Slip,"  and  afterwards  they  added 
G  to  Burliuy  to  correspond  with  the  surname  of  the  old  Quaker  mer* 
chant,  Edward  Burling,  from  whom  this  slip  and  market  took  their 
names.  I  might  also  add  here,  that  a  part  of  this  family  moved  to 
New  Jersey  and  settled  ''  Burling-ton"  in  that  State.  He  lived  at 
the  corner  of  the  **  Smith's  Ply,"  (Pearl  Street,)  and  Golden  Hill, 
where  ''  Edward  and  James  Burling  sold  iron,  hardware,  and  New 
York  distilled  rum."* 

The  law  of  1748  notices  this  market-place  as  the  *'  Market-House 
at  Rodman's  Slip,"  and  the  N.  Y.  Gazette,  June  1, 1752,  says:  "By 
Samuel  Bowne's,  at  Burling^ s  Slip,  near  the  new  market;^*  another 
paper ,t  in  1754,  notices  "  John  Parsons,  joiner,  having  lately  set  up 
in  his  business,  between  the  new  market  and  Fly  Market;"  and 
Maerschalck's  Map  of  the  city,  1755,  marks  No.  12  "  Burlin's  (Bur- 
ling^s)  Market,"  and  this  was  its  general  name,  until  it  ceased  to 
exist. 

It  never  appeared  to  be  a  popular  market-place,  if  we  should  judge 
from  the  contents  of  the  following  petition  presented  on  the  4th  day 
of  July,  1760,  from  "  John  Riker  and  others,  to  the  number  of  sixty 
and  upwards,  inhabitants  on  both  sides  of  the  slip,  commonly  called 
*  Burling's  Slip,  in  the  East  Ward,'  which  was  read,  setting  forth  that 
notwithstanding  the  good  intention  of  making  or  leasing  that  space 
for  a  slip,  and  the  erection  and  building  a  market-hauae,  then  at  the 
•  N.  Y.  Mercury,  July  26,  1766.  t  Ibid.,  April  2$. 


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EXCHANGB.  279 

liead  of  said  dip,  jonr  petitioners  conceiye  that  not  only  the  good 
ends  and  purposes  which  were  expected  in  making  the  same  have 
not  succeeded  for  many  years  last  past,  chiefly  from  the  almost  dis- 
use of  the  same."  It  had  then  been  standing  about  fourteen  years, 
and  although  it  is  marked  on  the  map  of  the  city  by  T.  Maerschalken, 
1763,  letter  Z,  I  think  it  did  not  then  exist,  except  on  that  map. 
The  Laws  of  1762  do  not  notice  it,  nor  can  I  find  any  further  refer- 
ence to  it  in  the  old  papers,  except  a  notice  in  the  Weekly  Gazette 
and  Post  Boy,  July  8, 1766,  that  "  On  the  evening  of  the  Ist  of  July. 
Godfrey  Haynes,  who  followed  the  business  of  lobster  catching  for 
this  market,  went  in  the  waters  to  swim,  near  '  Burling  Slip/  and 
soon  after  drowned.''  "  Tliis  market^^^  in  the  above,  no  doubt  meant 
the  New  York  markets  in  general. 


"EXCHANGE,"  (IN  BROAD  STREET.) 

1752.  This  building,  no  doubt,  when  erected,  was  intended  for 
the  principal  use  of  the  merchants  and  gentlemen  of  the  neighbor- 
ing vicinity,  as  an  Exchange ;  but,  as  the  lower  part  was  used  as  a 
market-plaoe  many  years  after,  it  was  but  right  to  claim  it  as  such 
for  the  time  during  which  it  was  so  occupied.  The  Exchange  and 
the  '* Exchange  Market"  were  two  separate  buildings,  and,  at  one 
period,  both  existing  at  the  same  time,  as  will  be  shown. 

In  the  month  of  June,  1752,  several  gentlemen  subscribed  to- 
wards erecting  this  building,  at  the  lower  end  of  Broad  Street, 
near  the  *'Long  Bridge."  "XlOO  was  voted  by  the  Common  Coun- 
cil to  assist  in  so  laudable  an  undertaking."  This  location  would 
now  be  nearly  on  a  line  of  Water  Street,  in  Broad. 

The  plan  was  proposed,  and  the  building  commenced ;  but,  on  the 
4th  of  October  following,  a  resolution  passed  the  Board,  "  That  the 
whole,  or  as  much  of  the  foundation  on  the  east  side  of  the  Ex- 
diango  now  a-building  and  to  be  built  at  the  lower  end  of  Broad 
Street,  as  is  necessary,  to  be  taken  up;  and  that  five  arches  be 
made  on  each  side,  instead  of  six,  with  two  at  each  end."  Its  erec- 
tion proceeded  very  slowly,  as  I  find  it  was  not  finished  until  1754, 
when  it  was  leased  for  one  year  to  Oliver  De  Lancey,  for  X50; 
the  lower  part  was  used  by  the  merchants,  and  the  upper  rooms  were 
appropriated  to  various  uses. 


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280  EXCHANGE. 

Notice  was  given  on  the  4th  of  February,  in  the  *'  press/'*  that 
**The  new  ^Exchange'  being  to  be  opened  as  a  Coffee-Room  on 
Monday,  the  11th  day  of  this  present  month  of  February.    Keen  & 

LlGHTPOOr/'t 

''  'The  Beggar's  Opera'  and  'The  Devil  to  Pay'  to  be  performed 
by  a  Company  of  Comedians,  from  London,  at  the  new  Theatre  in 
Nassaa  Street,  this  present  evening,  18th  March.  To  begin  at  6 
o'clock.  Boxes,  6s. ;  Pit,  48. ;  Gallery,  2s.  Tickets  to  be  had  at 
Mr.  Parker's  and  Mr.  Gaine's  printing-offices,  at  the  Bayal  Eoo^ 
change,  at  the  King's  Arms,  at  Scotch  John's,  and  of  Mr.  and 
Mrs.  Love,  at  the  play-house." 

Then,  on  the  6th  of  May—"  The  Post-Office  is  removed  to  the 
house  wherein  William  Walton,  Esq.,  lately  lived,  near  the  New 
Exchange.^^X  And  then — "To  be  sold  at  publick  vendue,  to  the 
highest  bidder  or  bidders,  at  the  New  Exchange,  in  the  City  of  New 
York,  on  Wednesday,  the  29th  of  May  next,  at  11  o'clock  in  the 
forenoon,  two  certain  lots  of  land ;  which  said  two  lots  lie  three 
miles  from  the  German  settlement  on  the  Walkill."§ 

Two  years  after,  on  the  19th  of  April,  we  find — "  The  proprietors 
of  the  *  New  York  Society  Library'  are  desired  to  attend  with  their 
ballots  at  the  New  Exchange,  on  the  last  Tuesday  in  April,  for  the 
election  of  twelve  Trustees."!!  Then,  on  the  10th  of  July,  1758— 
"  Boper  Dawson,  at  the  Long  Room  over  the  Exchange,  continues 
to  sell  green  tea,  coffee,  &c."l 

In  the  month  of  February,  1760,  the  "Board"  was  informed  that 
"  Mr.  Watts  and  others  had  sent  to  Europe  for  a  large  dock,  which 
they  intended  as  a  publick  one,  and  desired  to  know,  that  if  the 
Common  Council  would  take  charge  of  it  and  erect  it  in  the 
Exchange  at  their  own  expense,  it  was  at  their  service;"  which 
was  agreed  to.  In  1763,  the  N.  Y.  Mercury  notices  "  Tickets  for 
the  electrical  experiments  in  the  Exchange,  which  begins  this  day 
at  11  o'clock,  are  sold  at  the  'Gentleman's  Coffee-House/  and  by 
Hugh  Gaine." 

Trouble  and  hardship  were  now  commencing,  with  business  dull, 
and  a  great  deal  of  suffering;  which  is  first  represented  in  a  "com- 
munication" in  Holt's  N.  Y.  Gazette,  Ac,  January  4,  1765,  as  fol- 
lows: "The  declining  state  of  business  in  the  city,  together  with 
high  rents  and  prices  of  the  necessaries  of  life,  having  reduced 
very  many  families  and  poor  people  to  great  distress^  especially 
since  the  late  severe  weather,  we  hear  several  humane  gentlemen 
of  this  city  have  made  contributions  for  their  relief." 

•  N.  T.  Mercqry.  \  Ibid.,  March  18, 1764.  \  Ibid.,  6lh  of  Mmy. 

^  VM.,  Maich  4. 1764.       ||  lUd.  t  Dild. 


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EXOHANaS.  281 

The  infliction  of  the  "  Stamp  Act "  soon  followed,  which  led  a 
Committee  of  several  prominent  merchants  and  others,  who  ad** 
▼ised  and  directed  that  the  English  merchants  should  ship  no  more 
goods  to  the  Colonies  until  the  repeal  of  the  Stamp  Act,  and  to 
decline  selling  on  commission  any  such  goods  after  the  1st  January, 
1766 ;  which  was  generally  carried  out.  This  led  to  the  establish- 
ment of  a  Fair  or  Market  at  the  Exchanffe,  for  the  sale  of  ''home- 
manufactured  goods."  The  following  notice  appears  in  the  "pa- 
pers,''* dated  October  17,  1765;  "We  he^r  that  the  design  of  es- 
tablishing a  market,  to  commence  on  Wednesday,  the  23d  inst., 
under  the  Exchange."  And  on  the  24th  appears — *'  Yesterday  was 
opened  a  market  for  home  manufacture — supplied  principally  from 
the  country"— "to  be  held  on  every  1st  and  3d  Wednesdays  in 
each  month."  A  notice  on  the  9th  of  December  gives  a  more  par- 
ticular account  of  what  was  sold.  "On  Wednesday  last  was  held 
the  market  for  home  manufactures;  and  though  so  late  an  institu- 
tion, we  have  already  the  pleasure  to  see  it  attended  with  great 
success.  Both  sides  of  the  Exchange  were  crowded  with  a  variety 
of  goods,  which  had  a  very  quick  sale,  and  many  gentlemen  fur- 
nished themselves  with  good  warm  clothing,  Ac.  Cloth  will  con- 
tinue to  be  in  great  demand,  as  all  ranks  are  zealous  to  wear  it." 
"  To  be  clothed  in  homespun,  or  in  garments  which  had  been  dis- 
carded, was  now  honorable  and  fashionable."  t  Again,  on  the  SOth 
of  the  same  month — "As  the  first  Wednesday  in  January  falls  on 
New  Year's  Day,  we  inform  the  publick  that  the  market  which  was 
designed  for  that  day  will  be  held  on  Friday,  the  third.  There  will 
be  a  considerable  quantity  of  cloths  for  men's  winter  clothes,  be- 
sides a  variety  of  other  articles-^linens,  stockings,  mittens,  men- 
caps,  woolen  checks,  striped  stufiis,  linsey-woolseys,  handkerchief, 
bellows,  crockery-ware,  combs,  gloves,  shoe-brushes,  metal  buttons, 
Ac-  Happy  country!  that  can  supply  itself  with  these  articles." 
Obadiah  Wells  was  an  agent  for  tiie  sale  of  these  goods,  and  re- 
ceived five  per  cent,  for  sales  and  remittances.^ 

The  odious  "Stamp  Act"  passed  on  the  22d  of  Hardi,  1765,  and 
was  received  here  with  such  a  determined  opposition,  that  the  Gov- 
ernment officers  who  had  been  appointed  to  distribute  them  were 
compelled  to  resign  this  office,  and  "declare  they  will  have  nothing 
to  do  with  the  stamps."  It,  however,  was  short-lived;  in  fact,  it 
only  existed,  in  a  state  of  torpitude,  one  year,  less  four  days,  when 
its  convulsive  struggles  ceased,  on  the  ISih  of  March,  1766;  and  as 
soon  as  "  the  news  of  the  repeal  of  the  Stamp  Act,  caused  a  sudden  joy 
through  all  ranks  of  people  in  the  whole  city  ;  all  the  bells  were  set 
*  Weekly  6«seit6&Poi4  Boy.    t  DanUm  ii.  424.    t  Weekly  Post  Boy.  April  24, 176«L 


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282  EXCHANGE. 

a-ringing,  and  continned  till  late  at  night,  and  the  next  morning 
until  nine  o'clock."* 

This  resistance  to  the  "Stamp  Act"  had  the  effect  of  leading  the 
farmers,  mechanics,  artisans,  and  others  into  more  general  habits  of 
industry  and  frugality ;  in  fact,  it  gave  them  a  feeling  of  independ- 
ence, that  thereafter  they  could  rely  on  their  own  resources. 

"Pi£Wtco/a"t  congratulates  the  public  on  the  patriotic  and  fru- 
gal spirit  that  begins  to  reign  in  this  province.  "  For,  (he  sajrs,) 
Istly.  I  observe  that  many  of  our  most  worthy  citizens,  and  princi- 
pal gentlemen,  are  clad  in  country  manufacture  or  turned  coats. 
2dly.  That  spinning  gets  daily  more  in  vogue,  so  that  we  rather 
want  materials  than  industrious  hands." 

Under  this  latter  head,  (icUy^)  no  doubt,  its  remarks  were  or  be> 
came  true,  if  we  should  judge  from  the  following:  "On  the  9th 
instant,  three  young  ladies  at  Huntington,  on  Long  Island — namely, 
Ermina,  Liticia,  and  Sabrina — ^having  met  together,  agreed  to  try 
their  dexterity  at  the  spinning-wheel.  Accordingly,  the  next  morn- 
ing they  set  themselves  down,  and,  like  the  virtuous  woman,  put 
their  hands  to  the  spindle,  while  their  hands  held  the  distaff;  and 
at  evening  they  had  26  skaines  of  good  linen  yarn,  each  skaine  con- 
taining 4  ounces :  all  which  was  the  effects  of  that  day's  work  only. 
N.  B.—  Tis  to  be  hop'd  that  the  Connecticut  ladies,  who  are  so 
expert  at  their  spinning-wheels,  will  not  presume  to  think  but  that 
their  equals  may  be  found  on  Long  Island,  if  not  in  Huntington."^ 

Proceeding  with  "Pt/iKco?a'«"  remarks,  under  the  next  head: 
"  3dly.  That  the  farmers  are  endeavoring  to  remedy  this  difficulty, 
by  the  large  quantity  of  flax-seed  sown  more  than  usual,  and  their 
intention  of  keeping  more  sheep.  4thly.  That  little  lamb  now 
comes  to  market,  as  no  true  lovers  of  their  counti:y,  or  whose  sym- 
pathetic breasts  feel  for  its  distresses,  will  buy  it.  Sthly.  That 
sassafras,  balm,  and  sage  axe  coming  greatly  into  use  instead  of 
tea,  and  are  allowed  to  be  more  wholesome:  this  seeming  trifling 
article  greatly  increases  our  debt  to  England.  Lastly.  The  fash- 
ion of  funerals  and  mourning  is  in  general  much  altered  from  the 
late  troublesome,  ridiculous,  and  expensive  method ;  for  what  could 
be  more  absurd  than  for  a  person,  when  in  affliction  for  their  deai> 
est  relatives,  to  be  teased  about  dress  and  ceremonial,  and  perhaps 
involved  in  a  large  bill  of  costs,  when  their  creditors  are  most  apt 
to  call  upon  them?"  He  further  says,  in  a  postscript,  that  "an 
effectual  way  to  prevent  lamb  being  brought  to  market  would  be,  for 
all  the  well-affected  to  their  country  not  to  buy  any  meat  from  such 
butchers  as  killed  any  lamb." 

•  Weekly  Poet  Boy.  May  23, 176e.  f  Ibid.,  Hay  80. 176«. 

t  Weekly  Mercury,  March  20.  176a 


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£XCHAMG£.  283 

Bat  these  exciting  times  have  drawn  attention  from  the  Exchange^ 
which  the  "  Chamber  of  Commerce,"  at  a  meeting,  February  7, 1769, 
were  consulting  about.  They  wished  "  to  have  a  decent,  large  and 
commodious  room  to  meet  in,  and  that  the  room  over  the  Exchange 
will  be  proper  for  that  use."  It  was  **  Ordered,  that  a  Committee 
do  wait  upon  the  Mayor  and  Corporation,  and  apply  to  them  for  the 
use  of  the  room  over  the  Exchange,  and  agree  on  such  terms  as  they 
judge  reasonable."  This  ''  Committee  "  reported  at  their  next  meet- 
ing, (March  1th,)  that  the  Corporation  ''  were  pleased  to  say  that 
the  Chamber  should  have  the  use  thereof  for  one  year,  free  of  rent, 
from  the  first  of  May  next,  if  they  would  put  it  in  such  repairs  as 
they  required,  and  after  that  to  pay  X20  per  annum." 

Here  they  met,  and  while  they  dUscussed  the  ''  topics  of  the  day," 
they  also  discussed  their  "  bread  and  cheese,  beer,  punch,  pipes,  and 
tobacco,  proTided  (by  the  Treasurer)  at  the  expense  of  the  members 
present,  so  that  it  doth  not  exceed  one  shilling  each  man,  which  each 
person  is  to  pay  to  the  Treasurer." 

These  "  topics  of  the  day"  were  worthy  of  grave  discussion,  not 
only  by  the  members  of  this  Board,  but  by  all  the  patriotic  inhabit- 
ants. The  Revenue  Act,  with  its  onerous  duties  and  taxes,  and  many 
others  respecting  domestic  manufactures  and  foreign  commerce, 
with  the  quartering  and  providing  of  a  large  body  of  an  obnoxious 
and  insolent  soldiery,  all  tended  to  encircle  them  with  rank  oppres- 
sion ;  but  again  they  arose,  as  with  the  "  Stamp  Act,"  and  strike 
such  a  blow  as  led  to  the  separation  of  the  Colonies  from  Great 
Britain.  The  merchants,  traders  and  others  again  entered  into  non- 
importation associations ;  but  not  with  the  same  unanimity  as  before, 
as  we  find  several  examples  made  of  those  who  were  not  true  to  their 
agreement. 

•*A  parcel  of  earthen  ware,  wrought  iron,  and  a  few  other  pack 
ages  of  goods,  having  been  brought  in  here  on  Tuesday  last,  from 
New  Haven,  lately  imported  there  from  Liverpool,  it  was  found,  on 
inquiry,  that  they  belonged  and  were  consigned  to  persons  in  this 
city,  save  only  fifteen  crates  of  the  earthen  ware,  the  property  of 
the  master  of  the  vessel  in  which  they  were  imported,  and  by  him 
sent  here  for  sale.  But  we  have  the  pleasure  to  inform  the  public, 
that  the  owners  of  said  goods,  so  far  from  insisting  on  their  deliv- 
ery here,  agreeable  to  the  tenor  of  the  bills  of  lading,  did  very  cheer- 
fully sign  an  order  to  the  master  of  the  vessel  who  brought  them,  to 
take  them  immediately  back  again  to  New  Haven ;  there  to  lie  in 
store  until  the  act  of  Parliament  imposing  duties  on  paper,  glass, 
4c.,  is  repealed."* 

"The  Committee  appointed  to  inspect  into  the  importation  of  goods 
*  Penna.  Chrocacle,  July  13, 1769. 


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284  EXCHANGE. 

in  this  city,  contrary  to  the  agreement  subscribed  by  the  merchaats, 
traders  and  others,  are,  in  consequence  of  the  trust  reposed  in  them, 
under  necessity  of  advertising  the  public,  that  Thomas  Charles  Wil- 
let,  milliner,  in  Wall  Street  in  this  city,  having  been  at  Philadel- 
phia about  six  weeks  ago,  and  suspected  of  having  brought  goods 
from  thence,  confesses  that  he  did  there  purchase  sundry  goods  to 
the  amount  of  thirty  pounds,  which  he  exposed  to  sale  in  this  city ; 
that  he  exchanged  in  Boston,  from  whence  he  is  lately  arrived,  some 
unsaleable  goods  he  has  had  in  his  store,  for  others  which  were  ab- 
solutely necessary  for  his  business.  He  alleges,  in  his  justification, 
that  he  did  not  know  when  he  purchased  the  goods  in  Philadelphia, 
that  it  was  contrary  to  the  agreement  of  the  merchants  here,  and 
that  as  those  he  brought  from  Boston  were  only  in  exchange  for 
others  less  valuable,  he  conceived  no  injury  done  by  it  to  the  colony. 
How  far  these  excuses  will  exculpate  the  conduct  of  the  said  Willet, 
must  be  submitted  to  the  important  public  and  to  the  patriotic  ladiea 
of  this  city,  who  will  undoubtedly  treat  him  accordingly." 

"  Saturday  last,  (says  the  same  paper,  July  14/A.)  an  amende  hen* 
orahle  was  performed  by  Mr.  Simeon  Cooley,  of  this  city,  in  the 
presence  of  a  numerous  audience,  for  a  contempt  and  opposition 
shown  the  agreement  of  British  America  for  non-importation  of 
goods.  He  begged  pardon  of  all  his  fellow-citizens ;  promised  never 
to  offend  again  in  like  manner,  and  engaged  to  send  all  the  effects 
he  had  imported  to  the  public  store,  there  to  remain  till  the  revenue 
acts  were  repealed."  They  were  soon  after  repealed,  all  except 
that  on  tea^  which  the  people  refused  to  use,  or  allow  to  be  landed, 
or  imported. 

Among  the  first  to  suffer  for  aot«  of  resistance  was  one  of  the 
prominent  "  Sons  of  Liberty,"  Captain  (afterwards  General)  Alex- 
ander McDougal,  whose  prominent  history  with  the  "  War  of  the 
Revolution"  is  not  yet  written,  except  in  the  pages  of  other  histories, 
newspapers,  &c.  This  patriot  was  arrested  and  imprisoned  for  a 
long  time,  but  was  upheld  by  the  "  people,"  who  daily  visited  him 
in  crowds;  in  fact,  he  was  obliged  to  fix  certain  hours  for  visitors, 
many  of  which  were  ladies.  Gaine  says:  *' Wednesday  last,  the 
forty-fifth  day  of  the  j^vs,  forty -five  gentlemen,  real  enemies  to  in- 
ternal taxation,  by  or  in  obedience  to  external  authority,  and  cor 
dial  friends  to  Captain  McDougal,  and  the  glorious  cause  of  Amer* 
ican  Liberty,  went  in  decent  procession  to  d^e  new  goal ;  and  dined 
with  him  on  forty  five  pounds  of  beef-stakes,  cut  from  a  bullock  of 
forty  five  months  old,  and  with  a  number  of  other  friends,  who  join- 
ed them  in  the  afternoon,  drank  a  variety  of  toasts,"  "  to  the  num* 
ber  of  forty-five."* 

*  N.  Y.  Gazette,  fto.,  Felirauy  19, 1770. 


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EXCHANGE.  285 

We  again  turn  to  the  "  Eocchange,^^  where  we  find,  "  On  Monday, 
the  14th  inst.,  January,  at  six  in  the  evening,  will  be  held  at  the  Long 
Room  in  the  Exchange,  the  Annual  Meeting  of  the  Marine  Society 
of  the  City  of  New  York,  in  the  proyince  of  New  York  in  America, 
of  which  the  members  and  those  who  incline  to  become  members  are 
desired  to  take  notice.    By  order  of  the  President. 

"  Robert  Benson,  jffec'y."* 

Then,  in  the  month  of  June  following,  it  was  found  in  the  posses- 
sion of  several  valiant  eoldiera^  whose  grand  attack  on  two  peaceable 
countrymen  is  noticed,  as  follows:  "On  Tuesday,  the  11th  instant, 
we,  the  subscribers,  Jacob  Mills  and  Jeremiah  Mulford,  of  Brook- 
haven,  on  Long  Island,  having  taken  lodgings  at  the  house  of  Mr. 
William  Milner,  near  the  Exchange  in  New  York,  about  9  o'clock 
in  the  evening  we  went  from  his  door  into  the  piazza  of  the  Exchange^ 
where  three  soldiers  who  entered  immediately  after  us,  and  the  cen- 
try,  who  stood  there  before,  without  the  least  provocation  on  our 
part,  furiously  attacked  us  with  drawn  bayonets,  both  by  thrusting 
and  striking,  whereby  we  were  both  wounded  in  many  places  and 
one  of  us  dangerously  in  the  head,  face,  hands,  and  body,  and  then 
forcibly  carried  us  away  to  the  guard-hotMe,  and  there  confined  us. 
We  being  at  first  ignorant  of  the  cause  of  this  outrageous  behaviour, 
inquirea  the  reason  of  it,  and  entreated  the  soldiers  not  to  murder 
us,  which  we  apprehended  was  their  design,  and  which  they  often 
threatened  both  on  the  way  to  the  guard-house  and  while  we  were 
there ;  they  accused  us  with  throwing  stones  at  the  centry  in  the  Ex- 
change,  (placed  there,  we  understand,  on  account  of  an  entertainment 
made  by  the  officers  in  the  rooms  above.)  We  declared  and  offer'd 
to  prove  our  innocence  of  the  charge — or  to  give  security  for  our 
appearance  to  answer  for  our  conduct  the  next  day — but  all  in  vain, 
we  were  hurried  to  the  guard-house;  and  after  several  hours'  con- 
finement, were  told  that  if  we  would  pay  45s.,  they  would  release 
us;  we  expostulated  on  the  injustice  of  the  demand,  but  one  of  us 
being  faint  thro'  loss  of  blood,  and  being  in  danger  of  bleeding  to 
death,  in  order  to  get  our  wounds  dressed,  and  out  of  such  hands, 
we  consented  to  deliver  the  money,  which,  when  they  had  received, 
they  suffered  us  to  depart. 

"Next  day,  being  advised  that  the  shortest  means  of  redress 
would  probably  be  by  trial  before  a  court-martial,  we  applied  ac- 
cordingly to  advice,  and  on  Thursday  the  13th,  a  court-martial  be- 
ing called,  the  four  soldiers  were  brought  before  them  for  trial. 
We  had  several  witnesses  to  prove  that  we  were  not  the  persons 
who  threw  stones  at  the  centry ;  that  we  had  but  just  left  the  house 
•  N.  T.  Joarnal,  Jaaoary  14,  1771. 


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EXCHANGE. 

of  Mr.  Milner,  and  bad  not  meddled  or  concerned  onrselvos  with 
them  at  the  time  they  attacked  as.  On  the  other  hand,  three  or  four 
soldiers  in  behalf  of  the  prisoners  appeared  as  witnesses,  who  de- 
clared that  we  had  thrown  stones  at  the  oentry,  and  that  the  money 
paid  for  onr  release  was  not  extorted  from  us,  bat  Tolantarily  offered 
and  pressed  npon  the  soldiers  in  order  to  indace  them  to  release  as, 
that  the  affair  might  drop  without  farther  inquiry,"  "  No  oath  was 
administered  to  any  of  the  witnesses  on  either  side.  Upon  the 
whole,  we  could  obtain  no  manner  of  redress,  and  have  since  under- 
stood that  the  soldiers  were  cleared."* 

The  next  year,  (1772,)  the  cupola  of  the  Exchange  being  much  out 
of  repair,  an  appropriation  of  X50  was  voted  for  that  purpose.  The 
lower  floor  at  this  period  was  no  doubt  used  as  a  place  of  meet- 
ing of  the  merchants,  as  the  repeal  of  the  Act  on  many  of  the  ''home 
productions"  had  withdrawn  this  sort  of  trade  from  here;  however, 
there  appears  to  have  been  business  enough  in  the  neighborhood  to 
induce  the  Corporation  to  establish  a  ferry  two  years  after  at  this 
slip,  "  or  from  a  stairs  directly  fronting  the  Broad  Street,  at  the  east 
side  of  the  Long  Bridge,  and  on  Long  Island  at  a  stairs  built  at  the 
Dock  of  Mr.  Remsen.  This  ferry  will  be  called  SaiiU  Otorg^s 
Ferry.  Passengers  on  the  New  York  side  will  find  the  ferryman, 
if  not  at  the  stairs,  attending  either  at  the  house  of  Mr.  John  Lee, 
the  corner  below  the  Coenties  Market,  or  of  Mr.  James  Cobham." 
Then  "  Jqhn  Cornell  gives  notice  that  he  h^  opened  a  tavern  at  his 
house  on  Tower  Hill  on  Long  Island,  near  the  new  ferry,  called  'St. 
George's  Ferry.*  Companies  will  be  entertained,  if  they  bring  their 
own  liquor,  and  may  dress  turtle,  Ac,  at  said  house  on  the  very 
lowest  terms."t  In  the  month  of  August  following  he  gives  notice, 
"  that  there  will  be  a  BvH  baited  on  Tower  Hill,  at  three  o'clock  in 
the  afternoon,  every  Thursday  during  the  season." 

The  Corporation  in  the  previous  month  of  February  had  agreed 
to  establish  ferries  "  from  Coenties  Market  to  the  landing-place  of 
Philip  Livingston,  Esq.,  and  Mr.  Henry  Remsen  on  Nassau  Island; 
another  from  the  Fly  Market  to  the  present  ferry  at  Brooklyn,  and 
a  third  from  '  Peck  Slip'  to  land  at  the  place  last  mentioned.'* 

We  turn  to  the  Exchange,  and  find  "Rivington"  {March  24, 1774,) 
says:  "On  Tuesday  last  the  greatest  and  most  respectable  number 
of  the  inhabitants  of  this  city  ever  known  to  be  assembled  on  such 
an  occasion,  gave  at  the  Excharige  a  very  elegant  entertainment  to 
His  Excellency  the  Governor,  (TryoUj)  on  his  approaching  depart- 
ure for  Great  Britain.  True  harmony  and  convivial  mirth  filled 
the  heart  of  every  one  present,  and  the  day  and  evening  passed 
•  N.  T.  Journal,  Juae  SO.  f  N.  Y.  Mercury  May,  1774 


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EXCHANGE.  287 

with  the  most  unii)temipted  concord  and  unanimity.  When  His 
Bxcellencj  took  leave  of  the  company,  he  thanked  them  for  their 
genteel  compliment;  and  added,  that  he  went  from  them  with  re- 
lactance,  bnt  that  he  expected  soon  to  return,  and  hoped  to  find 
tiiem  in  the  same  happy  union  in  which  he  then  left  them." 

The  general  introduction  in  the  colonies  of  the  manufacturing  of 
woolen  goods  caused  from  the  "  Stamp  Act"  in  1765,  no  doubt  tend- 
ed to  increase  the  breeding  of  sheep  and  lambs,  but  not  to  that  de- 
gree which  the  detnand  called  for.  Prior  to  this  ''Stamp  Act," 
sheep  were  raised  more  for  exportation  than  for  wool,  as  that  article 
was  but  little  used,  and  consequently  at  a  low  price,  and  not  in  de- 
mand. Mutton  had  but  few  admirers,  and  sheep  were  not  allowed 
to  increase  above  the  demand  for  exportation;  but  in  the  "lamb" 
state,  thousands  were  exterminated  as  food ;  and  although  associa- 
tions were  organized  against  the  use  of  young  lamb,  yet  this  fact  did 
not  assist  in  the  large  demand  for  wool.*  The  Provincial  Congress 
in  1774,  however,  passed  a  resolution  prohibiting  sheep  from  being 
exported ;  this,  with  the  increased  price  of  wool,  gave  more  encour- 
agement to  the  farmers,  until  destroyed  by  the  "  Revolution." 

Soon  after  this  resolution  was  passed  by  Congress,  an  attempt 
was  made  to  evade  it  by  one  of  the  trading  vessels.  "On  Monday 
last,  (said  Gainer)  a  discovery  being  made  that  18  sheep  were  in  a 
sloop  in  the  harbor  bound  for  the  West  Indies,  a  number  of  citizens 
waited  on  the  Captain,  and  informed  him  that  the  exportation  of 
«Aeep  was  contrary  to  a  resolution  of  the  Continental  Congress, 
and  thereupon  obtained  his  promise  that  they  should  be  relanded, 
and  not  carried  out  of  the  harbor.  The  people  were  satisfied,  and 
patiently  waited  till  evening,  when  a  report  prevailing  that  the 
vessel  was  to  sail  that  night,  about  200  inhabitants  assembled  on 
the  wharf,  appointed  and  sent  four  persons  to  wait  on  the  Commit- 
tee of  Correspondence,  and  request  their  advice  concerning  the 
measures  proper  to  be  taken.  By  their  advice,  the  merchant  to 
whom  the  yessel  came  consigned  was  sent  for,  and  desired  to  cause 
the  sheep  to  be  landed  and  delivered  to  one  of  the  Committee  ap- 
pointed on  this  occasion  by  the  people,  which  person  gave  his  prom- 
ise to  return  the  sheep  as  soon  as  the  vessel  sailed.  Accordingly 
the  sheep  were  landed,  delivered,  and  soon  after  the  vessel  was  sail- 
ed, returned  to  the  proprietor ;  on  which  the  people  being  well  sat- 
isfied, peaceably  dispersed." 

These  proceedings  were  not  at  all  relished  by  "A  Westchester 
Farmer,"  who  says :  "  Had  the  Congress  attended  in  the  least  to  the 
iarmers'  interests,  they  never  would  have  prohibited  the  exporta- 
•  See  Fly  Market,  **  ArchlTes,"  p.  914,  October  20, 1774,  toL  L 


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288  SXCHANOE. 

tibn  of  sheep,  after  they  came  to  a  certam  age.  It  is  the  exporta- 
tion that  keeps  up  the  price  of  sheep ;  it  is  the  advantageous  price 
that  encourages  the  farmer  to  feed  them:  take  away  the  profit  of 
selling  them,  and  the  farmer  will  Jceep  bat  few.  For  they  are  not, 
and  I  am  confident  never  will  be,  in  this  country,  worth  keeping 
for  their  wool  alone.  However,  right  or  wrong,  the  Congress  have 
passed  the  decree.  Thou  shaU  not  export  sheep  was  pronounced  at 
Philadelphia ;  and,  right  or  wrong,  the  Committee  of  New  York 
are  determined  to  put  it  in  execution ;  and  thou  ahait  not  export  sheq) 
is  echoed  back  from  New  York.  How  this  decree  is  to  be  support- 
ed in  New  York,  may  be  learned  from  the  following  affair :  A  gen- 
tleman, an  ofiBcer  in  the  King's  service,  had  purchased  a  number  of 
sheep  to  carry  with  him  to  St.  Vincent's:  Mr.  Gaine's  netoapaper 
says  eighteen.  The  New  Yorkers,  probably  afraid  that  they  should 
lose  their  share  of  the  mutton,  assembled  on  the  dock,  sent  for  the 
Committee,  and,  in  open  violation  of  the  laws  of  their  country, 
obliged  the  merchant  to  whom  the  vessel  had  been  consigned  to 
have  the  sheep  landed:  the  sheep  were  committed  to  safe  durance 
till  the  vessel  sailed,  and  then  were  delivered  to  the  proprietor.  I 
suppose  to  the  person  who  had  sold  them  to  the  officer ;  though  how 
he  could  be  the  proprietor  after  he  had  sold  them,  I  cannot  see." 

The  next  year,  the  subject  of  killing  lambs  in  certain  months  of 
the  year  was  brought  before  the  Provincial  Congress,  and  on  the 
23d  of  June  a  resolution  was  introduced  by  Gouverneur  Morris, 
"  That  the  inhabitants  ought  not  to  kill  any  lamb  until  the  first  of 
November  next."  This  was  referred  to  a  meeting  on  the  29th  inst., 
when  ''Mr.  (Captain)  McDougal  offered  a  substitute,  which  was 
carried;"  and  they  "Resolved,  therefore,  That  no  person  in  this 
Colony  kill  any  lamb  until  the  first  day  of  August  next." 

In  the  month  of  August  following,  a  public-house  opposite  the 
Exchange  was  much  injured  from  a  cannon-ball,  the  particulars  of 
which  are  as  follows:  "On  the  night  of  the  23d  of  August,  1775, 
while  the  Sons  of  Liberty  were  removing  cannon  from  the  Battery, 
the  Asia  man-of-war  began  firing  with  cannon,  and  the  balls  struck 
a  house  next  to  Roger  Morris's  and  Samuel  Fraunces',  at  the  corner 
of  the  Exchange:  each  had  an  eighteen-pound  ball  shot  into  their 
roofs."*  This  firing  was  the  first  cannonading  the  city  received  in 
the  Revolution,  and  caused  considerable  alarm,  especially  among 
the  women  and  children,  many  of  whom  hurriedly  left  the  city. 

Some  of  the  "Sons  of  Liberty"  soon  after  turned  their  attention 
to  Rivington,  whose  "Gazette"  had  become  very  abusive;  when  one 
of  their  number,  Captain  Sears,  brought  into  the  city  a  small  body 
*  JEUvingtoa'B  GcuBettoer,  Aogoat  31, 1776. 


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EXCHANGE.  289 

of  Connecticut  troopers,  in  the  middle  of  the  day  of  the  4th  of  De- 
cember following,  and  demolished  his  press  and  printing  materials, 
which  stopped  his  paper,  and  he  soon  after  went  to  England.  How- 
ever, he  retarned  after  the  British  troops  had  taken  possession  of 
the  city,  and  his  reception  back  again  is  thus  noticed :  ''  On  Thurs- 
day eyening  last  {26th  September^  1777,)  the  house  of  Loosley  and 
Elms,  King's  Head  Tavern,  was  elegantly  illuminated,  to  testify  the 
joy  the  true  *  Sons  of  Freedom '  had  on  the  arrival  of  Mr.  Biving- 
ton  from  England.  This  gentleman,  with  unparalleled  fortitude,  hav- 
ing nobly  disdained  to  usher  to  the  world  any  inflammatory  pieces, 
which  might  be  productive  of  introducing  anarchy,  instead  of  con- 
stitutional authority,  into  this  once  happy  country,  felt  in  the  sever- 
est degree  the  rage  of  popular  delusion.  Liberty  he  always  firmly 
adhered  to ;  licentiousness  from  his  soul  he  ever  detested.  A  per- 
son, in  honor  to  free  press,  extemporary  pronounced  this: 


*  Rivington  \b  arrived— let  every  i 

This  injured  penoD'0  worth  coofen: 
Hts  royal  heart  abhorr'd  the  Rebel  plan, 
And  boldly  dam'd  them  with  his  press.' "  * 

He  came  with  the  appointment  of  King's  Printer  for  New  York, 
and  changed  the  former  name  of  "  Rivington's  Gazette,''  to  the 
**  Royal  Gazette,"  in  which  were  afterwards  found  the  Govern- 
ment's proclamations  and  orders. 

William  Butler,  a  British  ofiBcer,  says:  "The  inhabitants,  from 
the  arrival  of  His  Majesty's  troops  till  the  evacuation  of  New  York 
in  November,  1783,  were  free  from  the  payment  of  taxes  of  every 
kind,  either  for  the  purpose  of  lighting  the  lamps  or  cleaning  the 
city,  repairs  of  the  pumps,  streets,  or  roads,  or  the  public  works,  as 
well  as  the  maintenance  of  the  poor."  "  The  markets  were  raised 
above  eight  hundred  per  cent,  for  the  necessaries  of  life.  The 
landlords,  from  the  demands  for  houses,  raised  their  rents  on  an 
average  of  four  times  the  sum  such  houses  rented  previous  to  the 
rebellion.  And  the  vast  number  of  merchants  and  others  daily 
arriving  in  the  city,  was  the  cause  of  a  constant  increase  in  the 
article  of  house-rent." t 

Some  details  of  the  scarcity  of  provisions  in  the  city  at  this  pe- 
riod are  introduced  in  the  history  of  Fly  Market;  but  out  of  the 
city,  the  Rebels,  as  Rivington  was  much  pleased  to  notice  the  Patri- 
ots, in  his  Royal  Oaxette,  November  17, 1777 — "  By  a  flag  of  truce 
which  arrived  on  Tuesday  evening,  which  left  Albany  on  the  4th 
inst.,  we  learn  that  the  necessaries  of  life  have  risen  to  such  exor- 

•  N.  Y.  Gazette  and  Weekly  Mercury,  September  29, 1777. 
t  TomUnaon'i  Papers,  in  Mercantile  Library. 

Vol.  L— 19 


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290  EXCHANGE. 

bitant  prices  as  make  them  almost  unattainable  to  those  not  con- 
cerned in  the  Bebel  Army.''  ''  The  currency  is  reduced  to  the  low- 
est ebb,  and  barter  is  substituted  in  the  place  of  money.  Those 
who  have  not  one  commodity  to  give  for  another,  must  pay  the  fol- 
lowing prices,  viz. :  Port  wine,  8  dollars  per  bottle ;  rum,  12  dollars 
per  gallon ;  salt,  30  dollars  per  bushel ;  Bohea  tea,  16  dollars  per 
lb. ;  sugar,  10  shillings  per  lb. ;  beef,  1  shilling  and  4  pence  per  lb.; 
indifferent  linen,  when  to  be  had,  12  dollars  per  yard ;  and  butter, 
from  9  to  10  shillings  per  lb.'*  The  same,  24th  inst.,  states  that 
such  articles  as  **  flour,  rice,  tea,  and  tobacco  were  brought  by  land 
over  the  Middle  Road,  through  York  Town  in  Pennsylvania,  and 
Hartford  in  Gonnecticut,  to  Boston,  where  flour  sells  at  15  dollars 
per  hundred;  shoes,  10  dollars;  boots,  36  dollars;  and  trowsers, 
(pantaloons,)  such  as  are  worn  by  negroes,  18  dollars  a  pair;  a  very 
plain  surtout  coat,  without  lining,  60  dollars ;  ordinary  beef,  1  shil- 
ling; prime  do.,  15  pence;  pork,  18  pence;  and  not  a  single  hat  to 
be  purchased  at  any  price." 

We  also  find  "  Holt,"  the  patriotic  printer  of  the  N.  T.  Journal^ 
who,  with  the  army  under  General  Washington,  had  left  the  City 
of  New  York,  and  afterwards  was  found  publishing  his  paper  along 
at  intervals,  suffering  with  the  rest,  for  want  not  only  of  means,  but 
also  of  the  necessaries  of  life,  which  he  proposes  to  take  in  the  way 
of  trade.  In  the  month  of  August  he  says :  "And  the  printer  being 
unable  to  carry  on  his  business  without  the  necessaries  of  life,  is 
obliged  to  afiSx  the  following  prices  to  his  work,  viz. :  For  a  quarter 
of  news,  12  lbs.  of  beef,  pork,  veal,  or  mutton,  or  4  pounds  of  butter, 
or  7  lbs.  of  cheese,  or  18  lbs.  of  fine  flour,  or  half  a  bushel  of  wheat, 
or  one  bushel  of  Indian  corn,  or  half  a  cord  of  wood,  or  300  wt. 
of  hay,  or  other  articles  of  country  produce,  as  he  shall  want  them, 
in  like  proportions,  or  as  much  money  as  will  purchase  them  at  the 
time;  for  other  articles  of  printing  work,  the  prices  to  be  in  pro- 
portion to  that  of  the  netospaper.  All  his  customers,  who  have  to 
spare  any  of  the  above,  or  other  articles  of  country  produce,  he 
hopes  will  let  him  know  it,  and  afford  him  the  necessary  supplies, 
without  which  his  business  here  must  very  soon  be  discontinued." 

The  situation  of  the  Rebels  on  the  12th  of  June,  1780,  at  the 
Highland  Forts,  and  the  detachments  that  were  sent  to  the  north 
from  there,  were  noticed  as  follows:  "They  are  obliged  to  carry 
even  provisions  with  them,  which  they  can  ill  spare,  living,  as  they 
do  at  the  Highland  Forts,  from  hand  to  mouth ;  there  being  no 
magazines  anywhere,  and  the  country  already  drained,  and  the 
prospect  respecting  the  ensuing  harvest  very  discouraging."*  ^To 
*  N.  Y.  Quetto  ADd  Weeklj  Meroory. 


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EXCHANGE.  291 

supply  the  deficiency  of  meat,  they  are  employed,  in  all  the  upper 
parts  of  the  (North)  river,  in  taking  and  salting  fish  for  the  Conti- 
nental soldiers."  Prom  another  source-—"  We  are  informed  by  a 
gentleman  who  lately  left  Albany,  that  the  chief  Continental  butch- 
er there  is  ordered  to  employ  a  number  of  the  other  butchers  in 
catching  fish,  such  as  herring  and  sturgeon,  for  the  use  of  the 
Continental  Army,  as  their  money  is  reduced  to  so  low  an  ebb,  that 
they  cannot  afibrd  beef,  and  that  they  have  a  guard  at  the  farm  of 
General  Schuyler  at  Saratoga,  to  prevent  the  inhabitants  getting 
any  share  of  the  fishery."* 

The  next  year,  (1781,)  in  the  month  of  July,  we  find  General 
Washington  at  Dobb's  Perry,  where  he  and  his  little  army  lay  en- 
camped ;  and,  to  encourage  the  farmers  and  others  to  bring  pro- 
visions, clothing,  Ac,  there  for  sale,  he,  by  a  "  Proclamation,"  es- 
tablished a  market-place,  as  follows: 

"-Be  it  knovm^  That  every  day  during  the  time  the  army  remains 
in  its  present  position,  from  daybreak  until  noon,  two  market- 
places will  be  open  for  the  supply  of  the  army:  one  near  His 
Excellency's  Head-Quarters,  in  the  field  first  back  of  the  house  and 
near  the  quarters  of  the  Adjutant  and  Quarter-Master-General ;  the 
other  in  the  Prench  camp,  near  the  house  of  Henry  Taylor,  which 
is  the  Head-Quarters  of  His  Excellency  the  Count  de  Rochambeau. 

"All  persons  who  will  bring  any  article  of  provisions,  and  small 
supplies  for  the  use  of  the  army,  may  depend  upon  being  protected 
in  their  persons  and  property ;  and  shall  have  full  and  free  liberty 
to  dispose  of  the  produce  without  molestation  or  imposition ;  and 
will  receive  no  hinderance  from  the  guards  of  the  army  on  their  pass- 
ing to  or  repassing  from  the  market-places.  No  person  will  be  per- 
mitted to  take  any  article  without  the  full  consent  of  the  owner. 

"  It  is  expected,  however,  and  will  be  required,  that  every  per- 
son, on  his  or  her  first  coming  to  market,  wiU  be  furnished  with  a 
certificate  of  recommendation,  shewing  their  attachment  to  the 
American  cause  and  interest,  signed  by  two  civil  magistrates,  or  two 
other  respectable  persons,  of  known  and  approved  character,  that 
no  injury  may  arise  to  the  army  from  the  arts  of  designing  and 
evil-minded  persons.  If  the  army  should  take  a  different  position, 
other  places  will  be  named  where  the  like  liberty  and  protection 
will  be  given.  Given  at  Head-Quarters,  near  Dobb's  Perry,  the 
10th  day  of  July,  1781.  G.  Washington. 

*'  By  His  Excellency's  command. 

"Jonathan  Trumbull,  Jun'r,  Secretary y 

In  1778,  says  the  "  Bw/al  Oatette/'  of  the  2d  of  December,  "  Mrs.. 
•  Boyal  Gasetto,  Maj  17. 


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292  EXCHANGE. 

Treville  has  just  returned  from  the  country,  and  opened  the  *  Lon- 
don Coffee-House'  at  the  Exchmge,  where  gentlemen  maj  be  en- 
tertained  with  breakfasts,  dinners,  and  suppers,  tea,  coffee,  Ac* 
Those  gentlemen  who  please  to  honor  her  with  their  company,  as 
she  is  provided  with  a  good  waiter  and  cook;''  and  on  the  2d  of 
February,  1780,  "  the  New  York  Marine  Artillery  Company  are  de- 
sired to  meet  this  day,  at  twelve  o'clock,  at  their  rendezvous  in  the 
Exchange.^^ 

But  the  Exchange  was  not  long  after  a  rendezvous  for  the  British 
soldiery,  either  to  meet  or  feast;  smiling  pea/ce  stepped  in  and  bade 
them  depart,  and  give  place  to  the  tired  and  tried  soldiers  of  free- 
dom, that  they  might  rest  in  the  arms  of  liberty. 

The  first  news  of  jjeooe,  says  Butler,*  in  a  letter,  was  "  On  the  6th 
day  of  April,  1783:  a  packet  from  England  arrived  at  New  York, 
and  brought  over  the  preliminary  articles  of  peace ;  and  on  the  8th 
of  the  same  month,  His  Mtyesty's  proclamation,  declaring  a  cessa- 
tion of  hostilities,  was  publickly  read  by  the  Town  M^jor  at  the 
City  Hall."  The  reception  of  this  proclamation  among  the  loyal 
citizens  is  thus  described :  "  We  are  informed  by  persons  who  were 
present  at  New  York  when  the  proclamation  for  a  cessation  of  hos- 
tilities was  read  in  the  presence  of  a  great  number  of  people,  that 
at  the  conclusion,  instead  of  the  signs  of  approbation  generally  ex- 
hibited on  such  occasions,  nothing  but  groans  and  hisses  prevailed, 
attended  by  bitter  reproaches  and  curses  upon  their  king,  for  having 
deserted  them  in  the  midst  of  their  calamities.  The  greatest  de- 
spair is  depicted  in  every  countenance,  and  the  little  comfort  they 
can  possibly  experience  in  the  deserts  of  Nova  Scotia  will  tend  to 
heighten  their  distress.  It  is  said  that  the  number  of  persons  last 
embarked  for  that  country  amount  to  near  four  thousand, "t 

This  was  followed  with  an  "  Order,"  dated  "  Head-Quarters,  New 
York,  16th  of  June,  1783.  The  proprietors  of  houses  or  lands  late- 
ly evacuated  will  apply  to  Lieutenant-General  Campbell,  for  the 
possession  of  those  on  Long  Island ;  to  Brigadier-General  Birch  for 
those  on  York  Island,  and  Brigadier-General  Bruce  for  those  on 
Staten  Island.  These  general  officers  will  be  pleased  to  cause  all 
such  estates  to  be  immediately  delivered  up  to  the  proprietors  or 
to  their  attornies,  unless  where  they  may  see  sufficient  reasons  for 
retaining  them  some  time  longer,  which  reasons  they  will  report  to 
the  Commander-in-Chief.  In  ^like  manner,  all  estates  which  shall 
hereafter  be  evacuated  are  to  be  surrendered  up  to  the  proprietors, 
"(Signed,)        Ol.  Db  Lancby,  Adjt.  General.^t 

*  TomUnson's  Papen,  in  Mercantile  Library. 

t  Fenna.  Packet,  April  17, 1783.  |  Ibid.,  Jane  2L 


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EXGHAN6B.  293 

A  correspondent  describes  the  manner  in  which  these  estates  were 
delivered  up  to  their  rightful  owners.  He  says:  '*  On  the  publica- 
tion  of  the  ratification  of  the  preliminary